Like most famous brands in the world, L'Oreal began with one bold idea that was somewhat ahead of its time. Namely, with the ability to dye hair with synthetic dye.
And this idea came to the mind of a young French chemist Eugene Schuller, who once developed the appropriate tool.
At first, the young man hurried to test the invention on his wife's hair. And after it fully justified itself, he offered a novelty to one of the familiar hairdressers. The unusual composition proved to be in demand, and mass production of paint was soon established. Eugene called his creation L'Aureale in honor of the hairstyle popular at that time, when the hair encircles the face with a halo. A slightly modified version of this word soon became the name of the brand.
History of L'Oreal
Often the path to the realization of a dream is thorny. So, Eugene Schuller had to work on the production of hair dye at night in order to carry it to hairdressers during the day. In 1909, some funds were invested in the project of a young chemist by the Society for Harmless Hair Colors. After that, the development of the brand went much faster.
In 1934, L'Oreal grew so much that it afforded the acquisition of Monsavon. At the same time, the range of manufactured products is greatly increasing, covering soap, alkaline shampoos and perfumes.
In 1937, L'Oreal began publishing its own beauty magazine, Marie-Claire. It is noteworthy that even now, almost 80 years later, this magazine is popular among the fair sex.
In the 30s, with a light suggestion by Coco Chanel, the founder of the Chanel brand, tanning began to come into fashion. L'Oreal responded immediately by releasing first a sunscreen milk and then opening an entire plant producing sunscreens.
In 1939, the L'Oreal brand was officially registered. The company's central office is located in Paris, rue Royal, 14. Some time after that, Eugene decides that it's time to bring it to the international market. Thus was opened the first branch of L'Oreal in the United States.
In 1957, the founder of the brand Eugene Schuller dies, and the company passes to his daughter Liliane Bettencourt, who at that time already perfectly understood in which direction to move. The new owner began to expand the area of ownership by acquiring other equally well-known cosmetic brands. So, in 1964, she bought the French company Lancome, a year later - Garnier, and a few years later - Biotherm. In the 80s, L'Oreal lost shares in Helena Rubinstein, Vichy and La Roche-Posay. Maybelline was bought out in 1996 for $786 million and The Body Shop in 2006 for $652 million.
Like the company Coca-Cola, L'Oreal does not focus on the development of one single brand, but tries to develop in various directions. Her main goal is to preserve the uniqueness and cultural flavor of each of her brands. So, for example, the acquired company Maybelline continued to position itself exclusively as an American one. For this, a commercial was filmed called Maybelline Miami Chill, which takes place in Manhattan. This strategy immediately paid off - sales doubled, and the brand gained popularity far beyond the US.
It's funny that L'Oreal produces similar products under different brands, thereby generating competition within the company itself. According to the current manager of the company, Lindsay Owen-Jones, real development is possible only in conditions of healthy competition. Moreover, with a decrease in the popularity of one brand, sales of another automatically increase. As a result, L'Oreal never loses its position.
And, of course, among all the brands mentioned above, ĽOréal itself is the largest. Under its main brand, the company produces products for both women and men. Its slogan “Because I deserve it” has remained unchanged for almost half a century. The McCann Erickson agency was the author of the first television advertisement. And since then, the company has spent a record 30% of sales profits on advertising its products.
L'Oréal is one of those companies that actively use celebrities to promote the brand. So, over the past decades, the famous phrase from the TV screens was said by Claudia Schiffer and Catherine Deneuve, Andy MacDowell and Letitia Casta, Mila Jovovich and Natalie Imbruglia, Charlize Theron and Jennifer Aniston, Virginie Ledoyen and Kate Moss, Beyonce and Natalia Vodianova. The L'Oréal men's line was represented by Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher and football player David Ginola.
Gradually, from a small family business, L'Oreal has become the largest cosmetic concern in the world. It combines 500 different brands, 25 cosmetic companies, 5 research centers, 47 factories in 22 countries and over 67,000 employees. Almost all brands of cosmetics that are sold in supermarkets, pharmacies and expensive specialized stores belong to the L'Oreal concern.
Among the company's brands: ĽOréal Professionnel, Kerastase, Redken, Matrix, ĽOréal Paris, Garnier, Maybelline, SoftSheen-Carson, Lancôme, Giorgio Armani, Yves Saint Laurent, Ralph Lauren, Biotherm, Helena Rubinstein, Shu Uemura, Kiehl's, Diesel, Cacharel, Vichy, La Roche-Posay, Innéov, SkinCeuticals and The Body Shop.
The owner of the company, Liliane Bettencourt, who inherited ĽOréal from her father, has now retired from active management of the group due to her age. But this does not prevent her from enjoying the results of her labors. Lillian is already 86 years old and she takes her place of honor in the list of the richest people in the world according to Forbes magazine. Her personal wealth was estimated at $18.8 billion. And not everyone can boast of this.