Cosmetics giant Coty has announced that it saw a 19.4 percent jump in profits in its Consumer Beauty Division for the second quarter of fiscal 2018, which ended Dec. 31, due mostly to its social selling brand Younique.
“Younique continued very strong performance with double-digit sales growth in the quarter with several countries increasing at triple-digit rates, including France, Germany and Spain,” Coty CEO Camillo Pane told investors in an earnings call. “As of December, Younique had over 230,000 active presenters, an over 20 percent increase versus the prior year. Now in its fifth year, Younique continue to distinguish itself as a peer-to-peer pure-play e-commerce beauty platform with a highly scalable technology platform.”
In January 2017, when the brand had about 80,000 sellers, Coty bought a 60 percent interest in Younique. By December, that number had nearly tripled to 230,000, according to Digiday, a division of Digiday Media. The company also saw double-digit sales growth in its Q2, with sellers in countries such as France, Germany and Spain growing sales at triple-digit rates.
“Our Consumer Beauty Division has lifted its profitability by 19.4 percent versus last year to $131.9 million, or 11.6 percent of net revenues, thanks to the good contribution of Younique as well as strong cost discipline,” said Patrice de Talhouet, Coty executive vice president and global chief financial officer.
Younique began in 2012 as a digital-driven version of peer-to-peer companies Avon and Mary Kay. The company helps each seller set up a personal e-commerce site and provides them with digital marketing guidance for promoting skincare and cosmetics products on the seller’s personal social media accounts. Sellers then host an online party by inviting people to shop their page for a certain period. Per Digiday, Younique pays its sellers within three hours of any sale made on their websites.
Younique’s explosive growth in the past year or so can be attributed to a combination of its product offering and viral marketing methods on social media. Sellers act as social influencers for the beauty brand that relies on user- and seller-generated content on social media. By positioning itself as a digital-only brand, Younique has lower overhead costs and an eye for progressive commerce trends.
Coty’s portfolio of 70-plus brands includes COVERGIRL, Clairol and OPI, as well as premium fragrance and skincare labels like Calvin Klein and Marc Jacobs.