Karmart to launch two new derma beauty brands in expansion and premiumisation effort

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Karmart will launch two derma skin care brands later this year. [Karmart]
Karmart will launch two derma skin care brands later this year. [Karmart]

Related tags Thailand Karmart Skin care derma beauty

Thai beauty conglomerate Karmart will launch two derma skin care brands later this year as part of plans to expand and premiumise its beauty portfolio.

ACCA was developed in collaboration with dermatologists from Thailand and Japan, while Dr NIKS was created in collaboration with Thai dermatologists. Both brands recently debuted at Cosmoprof CBE ASEAN in Bangkok, Thailand.

Dr. NIKS will focus on sheet masks while ACCA will focus on acne care but have other ranges as well. The brands are set to launch sometime in August this year.

Karmart is known for a range of popular drugstore brands such as Cathy Doll and Brow It. The launch of Dr NIKS and ACCA was part of its efforts to diversify and reach consumers in the more premium market.

“While price is still a very crucial factor for market success in makeup, the premiumisation in skin care is very significant. Today’s consumers are very particular about ingredients and the source of the ingredients,” said Kat Wei, regional director, business development.

ACCA was jointly conceptualised with Karmart’s Japanese partner, the Marubeni Corporation, following the latter’s investment in October 2023.

Marubeni, one of Japan's largest trading companies, formed a consortium with Quadriga Private Equity Co, which took a 20% stake in Karmart.

The brand was developed in collaboration with a team of Japanese dermatologists and will be launched in markets such as Thailand and Japan.

“We’ve been doing very well with our Japanese partners. In March, we started distributing two brands – Cathy Doll and Brow It – in Malaysia through Ainz & Tulpe, which was acquired by Marubeni and launched in Malaysia. The development of this brand was the first step to establishing a more in-depth relationship,” said Wei.

Juggling costs

The conception of ACCA inspired Karmart to develop Dr NIKS.

“Through the development of ACCA, we thought it was a great concept. Within Asia, Thailand is also very well known for its dermatological care, so we decided to replicate the concept as we just so happen to have the resources and contacts with clinics in Thailand to do so,” said Wei.

She noted that working with local teams allowed the company to produce the brand at a lower cost.

“With ACCA, if we were to bring it outside of Thailand, we would probably only be looking at markets like Singapore that have the purchasing power. With Dr NIKS, we can target markets like Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam where we also have a significant presence,” said Wei.

She noted that Dr NIKS will have a stronger focus on the Thai market and that the price point may be very high for its neighboring markets like Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

The launch of Dr NIKS and ACCA is part of Karmart’s aggressive expansion strategy.

In the past year alone, it launched brands such as Lip It and Hair It, adding to its portfolio of brands such as Cathy Doll, Brow It, and BOYA.

“At the start of the year, we had 15 in-house brands and expect to launch more to grow our portfolio to 19 in-house brands,” said Wei.

Furthermore, with help from its new partners, the company is working to boost its export business, which currently accounts for only 10% of its business.

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