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New York listed cosmetics firm sets shop in Nairobi

Lyntons Beauty World Director Dr Joyce Gikunda (left) and Estee Lauder managing director for South Africa and sub-saharan Africa Sue Fox toasting at the official launch of Clinque and Estee Lauder counters at the Junction, Nairobi on May 23, 2012. File
Lyntons Beauty World Director Dr Joyce Gikunda (left) and Estee Lauder managing director for South Africa and sub-saharan Africa Sue Fox toasting at the official launch of Clinque and Estee Lauder counters at the Junction, Nairobi on May 23, 2012. File 

Estée Lauder, one of the world’s leading cosmetics manufacturer, has launched its products officially in Kenya through a franchise agreement with Lintons Beauty World, targeting the growing personal care market.

The New York listed company launched its Estée Lauder, Clinique, Aramis, Tommy Hilfiger, Michael Kors, Sean John and DKNY brands out of the 25 international brands in its portfolio. The products include skin care and fragrances.

Estée Lauder is expanding its business in Africa to tap into the growing middle class.

“Business is moving fast in Africa, there is a big opportunity in this market,” Sue Fox, managing director Estée Lauder Companies, South Africa, said during the launch Wednesday.

“We are very excited about being able to offer our products to the Kenyan consumer.”

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The company that manufactures and markets cosmetics has shops in South Africa and Zambia.

Some of its brands are available in the Kenyan market through traders but it eager to sell its products through two-full service counters opened in Nairobi’s Lintons outlets at the Junction Mall.

Dr Joyce Gikunda, Lintons Beauty World managing director, said: “There has been increased demand for cosmetics as consumers have become more affluent and better informed through advertising and marketing.”

Lintons Beauty World is a family business that was founded in 2008 as an associate of Lyntons Pharmacy, which opened shop 31 years ago.

It runs two stores, in Nairobi’s Junction and Westgate Mall and is looking to expand.

Estée Lauder mainly sells its products in department stores across the world and is currently in 140 countries.

Its entry into Kenya comes six months after Paris-listed L’Oreal opened a local subsidiary targeting the East African consumers.

The Nairobi office is pushing the softsheen Carsons, L’Oreal Paris and Garnier brands in the region.

A beauty and personal care report on Kenya by Euromonitor International says the international companies Unilever Kenya Ltd, Beiersdorf East Africa Ltd and PZ Cussons East Africa Ltd are the market leaders due to their network in distribution and the product brands.

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