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Tuesday October 3, 2023
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How "Made In France" cosmetics make our know-how shine on the international scene

Ahead of the "Made in France" trade show (November 8 to 11), the French Federation of Beauty Companies (FEBEA), with the research firm Astérès, draws up an inventory of a major sector of "Made in France", that of cosmetics.
The sector has more than 3,200 companies(1). Among them are large groups, but for the most part they are family-owned SMEs, spread throughout France. Dynamic and innovative, they create a lot of qualified local jobs, and French cosmetics companies contribute to the country's influence and attractiveness.

Dynamic exporting companies

France, the world leader in cosmetics, holds 23% of the world market share. And the fact of putting the "France" brand on a cosmetic product increases its value by an average of 30%, compared to an equivalent product from another country! "Cosmetics, whose exports grow by 5% each year, is one of the emblems of the "French brand", says Patrick O'Quin, President of the FEBEA (Federation of Beauty Companies). Our sector is also a major factor of tourist attraction: tourists consume, in France, 3 billion euros per year of cosmetic products! We are proud and happy to support this sector, which is essential both on a territorial and international level. This international influence is explained by the excellence of the French sector.

Solid companies, creating jobs throughout France

The cosmetics sector is made up of a network of historical companies, anchored in their territory, sometimes since the 16th century. Today, the Grasse, Occitanie and Ile-de-France clusters group together the majority of companies. Other territories such as the French Overseas Territories have specialized in raw materials, while the lung of innovation in the sector is in the "Cosmetic Valley", the competitiveness cluster located between Chartres, Orleans and Tours. In total, cosmetics (raw materials, manufacturing, distribution) includes 3,200 companies, including 67% in the region and 33% in Ile-de-France.
These companies are solid, with 82% being single family-owned. This explains why they most often pursue long-term strategies combined with a desire to pass on know-how and economic assets. As a result, they have a long lifespan: their average age is 16 years, compared with 12 years for the average French company.

These companies also create skilled jobs, well distributed throughout the country. The 164,000 direct jobs in the sector are concentrated, at 80%, in the region. The cosmetics industry employs 33% of engineers and managers and 39% of supervisors and technicians, compared to 17% and 26% respectively for the national average. This ecosystem of excellence, unique in the world, is supported by companies, large groups, VSEs and SMEs, suppliers of raw materials, manufacturers, as well as by specialized educational institutions.

Innovative companies

Every year, 170 new cosmetics companies are created, fueled by the sector's abundant innovation: its R&D is the most efficient in France with 3.6 patents filed per million euros spent. This creativity is increasingly oriented towards finding better solutions for the environment, thanks to more natural formulas, less polluting ingredients, and eco-designed waste.

(1) Astérès study for the FEBEA - The cosmetics economy: innovation, territorial dynamism and global influence - May 2019

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