Kao Unveils Strategic Business Overhaul to Elevate Hair Care Segment as a Key Growth Catalyst

Kao Corporation initiates a comprehensive transformation of its flagship Hair Care business with the unveiling of its first launch in this strategic makeover on April 20, 2024. Introducing the new hair care brand, ‘melt,’ which promises ‘beauty care for relaxing moments,’ the company aims to redefine hair care experiences by providing care during moments of unwinding. Select stores will offer the product in March, ahead of the official brand launch. As part of this transformative journey, Kao plans to introduce more new brands and revamp existing ones, reshaping the entire brand landscape of its Hair Care business.

The overarching goal of this transformation is to position Kao’s Hair Care business as a potent growth catalyst. Originating its research on hair care in the 1920s and pioneering the iconic Kao Shampoo Bar in 1932, the company has been at the forefront of hair care innovation for a century. Now, with a renewed business vision titled ‘Hair: The Power of Life,’ Kao is embarking on a transformational journey that draws on its extensive research and history.

The Japanese hair care market has consistently demonstrated robust performance, particularly in the high premium segment with products priced at ¥1,400 and above. Analysis of consumer feedback from this premium market segment indicates a strong focus not only on product features but also on emotional design elements such as worldview, concept, and packaging. A Kao survey conducted in 2023 among 3,000 men and women aged 20 to 59 revealed this trend.

Aligned with the business vision of ‘Hair: The Power of Life,’ Kao is restructuring its hair care brand portfolio to cater to consumers’ emotional needs. While emphasizing emotional drivers, Kao will leverage over 100 years of expertise in hair care research to consistently exceed consumer expectations for each brand. This transformation includes a significant foray into the flourishing high premium market, with the launch of the new ‘melt’ brand as the initial step, followed by the introduction of more brands in the future. Simultaneously, the existing brands like merit, Essential, and Segreta in the mass market segments will undergo rebranding to enhance their brand power. Through these brand innovations, Kao aims to establish its Hair Care business as a key growth driver.

Objective of Product Launch In today’s dynamic environment, where individuals increasingly prioritize their mental and physical well-being amidst evolving environmental and social conditions, the prevalence of information overload in the digital society has led to a growing emphasis on “self-care.” This societal shift has given rise to various trends, particularly among consumers inclined towards “high premium” hair care products, who demonstrate a penchant for incorporating home beauty treatments into their bath-time rituals (as per a Kao survey conducted in 2023, involving 3,000 men and women aged 20 to 59).

With the brand concept centered around “beauty care for relaxing moments” to nurture hair during moments of relaxation, the newly launched melt brand aims to engage the senses through sound, bubbles, texture, and aroma. The objective is not only to address hair care needs but also to present a novel approach, transforming the time spent on hair care into a rejuvenating act of self-care.

Source Link