CORPORATE PROFILE: Creating A Lasting Legacy - Business Media MAGS

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CORPORATE PROFILE: Creating A Lasting Legacy

NAOS launches into the African market.

French cosmetics company NAOS officially launched in South Africa recently, marking the event with Business Media MAGS’ exclusive interview.

Established in 1977, NAOS was founded in Lyon, France by French pharmacist-biologist Jean-Noël Thorel. This true pioneer wanted to shift the skincare industry status quo to a new paradigm – the principle of ECOBIOLOGY, which sprung from Thorel’s belief that ‘when skin is suffering, rather than over-treating it, it must be taught to function properly’.

© Lucy Gemmill – Sandra Grohmann

“The aim is to preserve and protect the skin ecosystem and strengthen its natural mechanisms,” Sandra Grohmann, NAOS Country Manager South Africa, explained. “Ecobiology is at the heart of everything NAOS does, making NAOS unique among its competitors and giving us our motto – Care first.

Working with a unique network of pioneers in health, beauty and well-being, NAOS goes “beyond what is legally required in cosmetics safety and formulation to create authentic products that respect the skin and act when and where they are needed”.

According to NAOS international Regional Executive Director, Patrick Naçabal, the French cosmetics industry is robust and one of sectors in which France is a global leader.

The newest of NAOS’ 47 global subsidiaries, South Africa was chosen as its springboard into Africa. The move was “motivated by Africa’s position as the world’s second-fastest growing economy, with South Africa among the main markets of interest. NAOS Group’s strategic interest in South Africa places it ahead of the Maghreb countries,” explained Naçabal.

The company recently set up office in Randburg, Gauteng, however, NAOS brand Bioderma has been in South Africa under a distributor since 1999.

“Bioderma has an excellent reputation in South Africa and is prescribed by doctors, highly recommended by pharmacists and skincare consultants, and loved by consumers. Since its launch in South Africa, the brand has consistently achieved market growth of between 15% and 18% per year.” says Grohmann.

According to Naçabal, NAOS products are suitable across a range of all skin types, including those of South Africans, having been tested across a spectrum of population mixes, including Asian and African skin types.


Looking ahead, NAOS is launching Bioderma’s Pigmentbio range, which targets hyperpigmentation in all skin types, this June. NAOS’ aesthetic anti-ageing brand Institut Esthederm brand was launched in 2017.

The Etat Pur brand will join the NAOS South Africa stable at a future date.

According to Naçabal, NAOS will open three new exclusive distributors in sub-Saharan Africa this year, with three more planned for 2020. Given its strategic African growth focus, NAOS is looking to double its human resources in South Africa every two years, he adds.

NAOS South Africa CSI

Patrick Naçabal

With its focus on developing local communities through its spirit of ‘Care first’, NAOS creates strong and successful CSR initiatives in all its markets.

In South Africa, NAOS partners with the KP Projects Sports Development programme, sponsoring an all-girl football team from disadvantaged communities.

Apart from providing match kits, NAOS will sponsor the winning team’s participation in a regional soccer tournament scheduled to kick-off in KwaZulu-Natal in September.

Furthermore, NAOS South Africa has co-opted doctors to educate young girls on the importance of healthy skin and skin care, as well as providing Bioderma sun protection and skin care products for the girls and trainers.

For more information on the initiative, visit

Global cosmetics market

According to Mordor Intelligence industry report, the global cosmetic products market was valued at $532.43 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach a market value of $805.61 billion by 2023, registering a CAGR of 7.14% during 2018-2023.

As it stands, NAOS operates in more than 100 countries and manufactures over 300 000 products per day in their only production centre in Aix-en-Provence, France. It has grown sustainably from €80-million in 2005 to €550-million in 2018.

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