Kadalys originally made its Asia debut in Japan, but the complications brought about by the global COVID-19 pandemic forced the company to pull out of the market.
Over the last three years, the company continued to develop its primary markets in Europe and the US. However, it believes the time is ripe for the brand to enter Asia again.
“The Asian market is a key strategic market for us. Consumers are asking for good natural products here and that’s what our brand is. We think it’s the right moment to come back,” said Morgane Le Cam, product development engineer, Kadalys.
“People really care about beauty in Asia, and they understand the benefits of the banana and the banana tree. So, we can tell a very interesting story in Asia,” said Ilona Durand, assistant product manager, Kadalys.
The company has gained a lot of traction with its upcycling of bananas in the West. While they believe the upcycled beauty trend has not reached Asia, it was confident the brand’s story would resonate with Asian consumers.
Le Cam added that it was only a matter of time before upcycled beauty trends kick off and become more mainstream in Asia.
The company is keen on revisiting the Japanese market and exploring opportunities in South Korea. It is also targeting the emerging South East Asian market with countries such as Vietnam and Indonesia.
Additionally, it is currently working to make its products ready for launch in China’s cross-border e-commerce channel.
“An online retailer would be the first step and next would be offline. We’re already working on the press and influencers. We have to be proactive in China’s market.”
The brand was exhibiting at this year’s Cosmoprof Asia in Hong Kong to look for partners that can help it expand in Asia.
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Another man’s treasure
The company has three patented active ingredients derived from upcycled bananas sourced from the French West Indies.
Like many fruits, many bananas are considered unsellable for being bruised, browned, and misshapened. This leads to tonnes of wasted bananas.
According to the brand, 40,000 tonnes, or 20% of Martinique’s bananas, are discarded every year.
To give these discarded bananas a “second life”, the company gathers this waste.
It has used it to develop its exclusive yellow, green, and pink banana ingredients over 10 years.
According to the company, each banana active is unique in its claims.
“The yellow banana has a firming action while the green purifies and balances the oil on your skin. The pink banana gives you a boost of glow and reduces pigmentation,” explained Durand.”
She added that the actives do not have a banana scent and only one of its products – its lip balm – is scented like banana.
The company is set to open a facility in the French West Indies to develop its ingredients.
Le Cam noted that the company could potentially study more types of bananas, noting there were over a thousand kinds of bananas in the world.