Shiseido plans U.S., S. Korean launches

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TOKYO - Leading Japanese cosmetics maker Shiseido Co. is stepping up its efforts overseas with a new brand launch in the U.S. and a joint venture in South Korea.

In the U.S., Shiseido says it will launch its "Qiora" brand of products and relaxation shops toward the end of November. The line of products, which includes skin care and fragrances aimed at helping people relax, was launched in 1998 in Japan. Shiseido's New York Qiora shop will be the first overseas store for the brand.

"As well as using the Qiora Shop as a base, Shiseido will utilize the store as a medium through which to promote the Qiora image, offer professional beauty treatment (such as facials) and other services," the company says. Shiseido is betting that the line of relaxation cosmetics will help New Yorkers reduce a little of the stress in their lives. Sales estimates were not released.

In South Korea, Shiseido has embarked on a joint venture with food company Daesang Corp. to sell and market locally Shiseido cosmetics in South Korea.

The venture, called S&D Cosmetics Co., will begin sales in April 2001 and is aiming for revenues of $9.3 million by the end of December 2001 as the company tries to take Shiseido cosmetics to 2,000 outlets in and around Seoul.

South Korea represents a fresh market for Shiseido, which has had difficulties trying to expand Japan's mature cosmetics sector.

Copyright August 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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