Korean beauty giant opens 10th store in Australia in two years

Image of an Innisfree store
Innisfree has opened its 10th store in Australia in two years. (Source: Supplied)

Two years after first entering the Australian market, Innisfree has just opened its 10th store at Westfield Hurstville in southwest Sydney and says it will open two more stores in Westfield centres in NSW (Parramatta and Burwood) by August.

The global beauty brand, which is owned by Amorepacific Group, the L’Oreal of South Korea, is known for its affordable skincare and makeup and environmental awareness. It claims to have collected and recycled over 15 million empty bottles since 2003 and planted over 79,000 of trees globally.

Its steady expansion in Australia follows a strong response to its launch two years ago.

“Australia has been a significant growth market for innisfree and our customers have really adopted our naturally inspired products and our immersive retail experience,” Brian Jeong, GM of Innisfree Australia, said in a statement about the Westfield Hurstville launch this week.

Company representatives have previously told Inside Retail the brand is committed to the Australian market for the long-term. Jeong told IR the brand will continue to review its growth strategy.

Like many retailers in Australia, Innisfree closed its bricks-and-mortar stores for the month of April amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. It has since resumed normal trading hours with new safety measures in place, including a limit on the number of people in stores, floor markings to maintain 1.5-metre social distancing, hand sanitiser at the entrance and throughout stores and increased cleaning.

“All of our staff are sanitising and washing their hands before and after each interaction and are regularly trained in stores in hygiene and safety practices,” Jeong said.

Testers are also available on request and are sanitised before and after use. This is a new measure; until two weeks ago, testers had been taken off the floor.

While rent has become a divisive issue for many shopping centre retailers, Jeong said Innisfree has a strong relationships with its retail partners.

“It’s a long road ahead with many uncertainties; maintaining our relationships with retail partners and ensuring our customers’ optimal experience is our key focus,” he said.

Affordable beauty

Innisfree offers over 650 products across skincare, makeup, body care, hair care, home fragrances and beauty tools ranging in price from $1 to $98.

It has over 1750 stores globally in 15 countries with over 20 million customers worldwide and claims that one bottle of its Green Tea Seed Serum is sold every seven seconds.

The brand has an office in Melbourne and a partnership with local online beauty leader, Adore Beauty. Sister brands, Sulwhasoo and Laneige, are stocked at Sephora, and Amorepacific is stocked at Mecca.

In February, Amorepacific Group posted annual revenue of 5.6 trillion South Korean won (A$6.8 billion) for FY19, KRW 2.1 trillion (A$2.6 billion) of which was generated internationally.

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