NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 26 – Global cosmetics manufacturer Oriflame is touting Africa as its next area of growth as it strives to cement market leadership in a vibrant industry.
Oriflame President Magnus Brannstrom – who is on an official visit to Kenya – said the company was already well established in Europe, Asia and Latin America but its presence in Africa was still negligible, hence the reason to focus on Africa as its next big market.
Mr Brannstrom said given Kenya’s geographical and economic position, he planned to use it as a gateway into the East and Central African market through its investment of Sh140 million since 2008.
“This is a very exciting and promising market for Oriflame and we see our future here as that of mutual benefit for the company and the people of this great continent,” Mr Brannstrom said.
Kenya became the first Oriflame market on the continent outside North Africa where it has a strong presence in Egypt, Morocco, Algeria and parts of Sudan.
Mr Brannstrom was confident that African residents stood to gain greatly from the entry as Oriflame presents incredible opportunities for people to take control of their own lives and become financially independent.
Many Oriflame sales consultants take up the business as a part time job outside their usual occupations.
But for some, the business has become a full-time engagement, giving them the opportunity to be self employed at a time when unemployment the world over remains high.
So far the company employs more than 3.4 million independent sales consultants worldwide.
Oriflame East Africa Chief Executive Fred Andersson said the number of independent sales consultants in East Africa was likely to reach 100,000 by the end of the year.
“We are getting people driving all the way from the Seychelles, South Africa and Rwanda to buy the products and sell in their markets,” Mr Andersson said adding it was evidence of Oriflame’s success in the market.
He however, could not reveal how much they intend to invest to penetrate Africa.