Earlier this year, Los Angeles-based Herbalife expanded its outreach to Latin consumers as the first-ever official nutrition sponsor of the Billboard Latin Music Conference and Awards. Billboard spoke to Ibi Fleming, Senior Vice President and Managing Director at Herbalife North America, about the company’s entry into the music scene.
Herbalife has garnered attention for its prominent sports sponsorships, but the company also sees music as a natural fit. “Although most people associate Herbalife with athletes, the reality is our products fit everybody,” Fleming said. In its sponsorship capacity, Herbalife provided protein bars, hydration and energy drinks to conference attendees, speakers and artists.
The company’s personalized health products have already proved popular among Latinos, who represent 60 percent of Herbalife’s business. According to Fleming, Herbalife has made a concentrated effort to customize its business opportunity for the Latin consumer. “We don’t just translate our information, for example. We have literature in Spanish and it’s catered to the Spanish-speaking community,” Fleming noted. Herbalife also hosts 10,000 to 15,000 people at an annual event for the company’s Latin sellers, where the line-up includes prominent music acts.
Herbalife saw 18 percent growth last year, and Fleming says the 33-year-old company is once again experiencing double-digit growth in the U.S. He identifies one key to Herbalife’s success: “It really boils down to our products.”