L'Oreal and Ulta Beauty

Part
01
of fifteen
Part
01

L'Oreal 1

According to L'Oreal, news publications, and company profiles, L'Oreal has partnered with three companies to drive innovation in the world of artificial intelligence as well as enhance involvement in social media. Details of each can be found in rows 3-15 of the attached spreadsheet. The company partnered with ModiFace and Automat Technologies to utilize AI technology in all aspects of their company ranging from customer service to personalized product suggestion. In addition, they have been devoted to improving their social media presence since 2012. The company partnered with Riviter in 2017 in order to maintain a real-time analysis of their social media ROI through their "cockpit" system. Since their social media efforts are the same throughout the company, we were unable to find any efforts specifically devoted to fragrance and beauty.
Part
02
of fifteen
Part
02

L'Oreal 2

We have entered the requested details concerning LÓreal in rows 16-27 of the attached spreadsheet. After scouring LÓreal's digital and annual reports, news publications, M&A databases like CrunchBase, and company profiles, we determined that there is no evidence of LÓreal investing in any firm with the capacity of developing personalized experiences and buying or investing in any business with the capability of using data analytics to develop customized contents. However, the cosmetic firm has partnered with UBiome and Tmall for a series of technologies that could help consumers scan and measure their skins’ hydration levels to design more personalized products for their skins. Additionally, LÓreal has partnered with Google to leverage data analytics to generate meaningful contents.
Also, after searching through several sources such as LÓreal's annual reports, press releases, industrial publications, and media sources, we could not retrieve related information concerning the patents filed for their personalized experiences or customized contents solution. Although the company filed 505 patents in 2018, there is no publicly available information to determine which patents were specifically dedicated to personalized experiences or customized contents solution.
Details of these findings can be found in rows 16-27 of the attached spreadsheet.

Part
03
of fifteen
Part
03

L'Oreal 3

Rows 28-38, Column E-F on the attached spreadsheet have been completed with the requested data points. After scouring L'Oreal's digital and annual reports, news publications, M&A databases like CrunchBase, and company profiles, we determined that the company partnered with IBM in the IoT (internet of things) space. It also partnered with Epicore Biosystems to create a new skin diagnostics product dubbed — "Skin Track pH," that measures skin pH levels to personalize skin treatments. Further, L'Oreal is deploying IoT for purchasing, production, packaging, and delivery of its products. It is also using a combination of "sensors, laser measurement, cameras, and advanced conveyor belts" to gain more insights into consumer behavior and the causes of some company problems. Regarding skin diagnostics patents, L'Oreal filed patent US20040171962A1 for apparatus and methods to enable them evaluate hydration of the skin or the mucous membranes. Unfortunately, no information was retrieved about L'Oreal's skin diagnostics investing and buying; and IoT buying and patents filed. Overall, all these details and many more are compiled into the attached spreadsheet, Columns E-F (L'Oreal), rows 28-38.
Part
04
of fifteen
Part
04

L'Oreal 4

L’Oréal 4 as an organization has ventured into Augmented and Virtual Reality while also acquiring a firm like ModiFace, which has AR mirrors. Details of each can be found in rows 39-50 of the attached spreadsheet.

L'OREAL 4 AUGMENTED AND VIRTUAL REALITY

  • L’Oréal and its recently acquired Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence entity, ModiFace, announced a long-term collaboration with Facebook to create new augmented reality experiences delivered through Facebook Camera products.
  • Via a direct and seamless connection between both platforms, ModiFace and Facebook deliver to people all over the world, for the first time, augmented reality powered makeup try-on experiences from the world’s leading beauty brands, such as Maybelline, L’Oréal Paris, NYX Professional Makeup, Lancôme, Giorgio Armani, Yves Saint Laurent, Urban Decay, and Shu Uemura.
  • This is a great new way to discover L’Oréal products and brands through very realistic, engaging and meaningful beauty experiences that enhance the beauty users experience.
  • In 2017 L’Oréal and Perfect Corp. launched a global partnership to integrate the Group’s makeup products into the YouCam Makeup augmented reality app, so that millions of beauty fans will be able to virtually test L’Oréal products, discover new products, and buy them directly in the app or in stores.
  • With augmented reality, marketing and sales practices are transforming to provide consumers with unique and personalized experiences — online and in stores.
  • L'Oreal 4 is using Augmented Reality in its world leading beauty brands, such as Maybelline, L’Oréal Paris, YX Professional Makeup, Lancôme, Giorgio Armani, Yves Saint Laurent, Urban Decay, and Shu Uemura.
  • L'Oreal 4 has partnered with Facebook, Image Metrics, Vidsy, Slick and Beauty Evolution for Augmented Reality.
  • L'Oreal 4 has acquired ModiFace, an Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence entity.

OTHER FINDINGS ON L'OREAL 4 AUGMENTED, VIRTUAL REALITY AND MIRRORS

L'OREAL 4 MIRRORS

  • L'Oreal 4 has acquired ModiFace, an Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence entity that uses AR mirrors.
Part
05
of fifteen
Part
05

L'Oreal 5

According to L'Oreal, news publications, and company profiles, L'Oreal has partnered with OSA to take part in Blockchain technology and has been devoted to sustainability since 2005. Details of each can be found in rows 51-62 of the attached spreadsheet. The company partnered with OSA to improve supply chain efficiency using Blockchain. In addition, they have been devoted to improving sustainability with a 67% decrease of green house emissions since 2005. Due to the mention of fragrance and beauty services as well as others in all reports for these topics, we determined that there are no efforts specific to this sector provided by the company relating to these areas.

Part
06
of fifteen
Part
06

L'Oreal 6

We have entered the requested details concerning LÓreal in rows 63-74 of the attached spreadsheet.
After scouring LÓreal's digital and annual reports, news publications, M&A databases like CrunchBase, and company profiles, we determined that there is no evidence of LÓreal acquiring or investing in a raw material company. However, the cosmetic firm has, over the years through research, developed major active ingredients they use in their products. The company has filed several patents relating to the materials they use in their products. They include Intra-Cylane® - 2010, PRO-XYLANE® − 2006, CERAMIDE R® 1995, IONENE G® − 1978, and MEXORYL® − 1993.
Also, after searching through several sources such as LÓreal's annual reports, press releases, industrial publications, and media sources, we could not retrieve related information concerning the patents filed and investments in luxury as a service. Although the company filed 505 patents in 2018, there are no publicly available information to determine which patents were specifically dedicated to luxury as a service.
Details of these findings can be found in rows 63-74 of the attached spreadsheet.

Part
07
of fifteen
Part
07

L'Oreal 7

L'Oreal is primarily a cosmetics, perfume, and skin and hair care products company. The company does not appear to offer any "Luxury Rental" services for its cosmetics. It also does not offer any traditional "Home Try On" services for direct use of its cosmetics, but it does support an app that lets users try on some of its products in a virtual format via dynamic image compositing. L'Oreal acquired the Augmented Reality (AR) software company Modiface in order to support this service. This information, along with reference links, has been entered into rows 75 through 84, columns E and F of the "Capabilities for Fragrance and Beauty Research" spreadsheet, linked here.

In order to find the requested information, we searched L'Oreal's web presence, annual reports, and press releases as well as trade and general media sources pertaining to the cosmetics industry. We expanded the scope of our research from the normal 24-month window out include the past 10 years and found no reference to luxury rental services and only the AR app as an example of home try-on services.
Part
08
of fifteen
Part
08

L'Oreal 8

We determined that L’Oréal recognizes the value of e-commerce, but the company does not operate an online marketplace. L’Oréal’s e-commerce sales occur across partner distributors’ sites, its brand sites, and pure player platforms. The company has made no acquisitions, investments, or patent filings related to e-commerce or online marketplaces. The entire project is here.

Methodology

We began our inquiry with an investigation of L’Oréal via the company website where we acquired press releases and annual reports. We were able to acquire much of the detail regarding the company’s e-commerce and online marketplace positioning through this means. In the case of the latter, we were able to determine the company’s lack of an online marketplace from these sources. However, none of these sources made any indication regarding acquisitions, investments, and patent filings on L’Oréal’s part. So we expanded our search to other sites (e.g., GlobeNewswire, MarketingWeek, CrunchBase, et al.) looking for articles or any relevant data. No source indicated that the company had made any acquisitions, investments, or patent filings related to e-commerce or online marketplaces.

L’Oréal 8

Direct to Consumer

In 2017, L’Oréal recognized consumer enthusiasm for e-commerce as a valuable opportunity. E-commerce accounted for more than 8.0% of the company’s 2016 total sales; the People’s Republic of China (hereafter, “China”) and the United States were the company’s sales leaders. L’Oréal reported that Kiehl’s and Urban Decay were particularly successful within the e-commerce distribution channel via their direct sales websites. L’Oréal stated that its marketing, communications, and sales practices were being harmonized to create omnichannel e-commerce strategies.

In 2016, L’Oréal reported that e-commerce grew by over 33%. The company added over 1400 digital experts to its e-commerce division in 2016. According to the company’s Q1 2019 sales data, the e-commerce channel remains extremely dynamic. L’Oréal’s e-commerce has since grown by over 43.7% in the same period. E-commerce has driven growth in all divisions but especially L’Oréal Luxe; fragrances by Yves Saint Laurent and Giorgio Armani have performed very well within the North American L’Oréal Luxe division.

L’Oréal has partnered with Facebook, eBay's marketplace, Alibaba, Jingdong, and VIP. L’Oréal’s partnership with Facebook centered on the creation of augmented reality experiences using the former’s beauty brands for marketing. The eBay marketplace store, operated by Trojan Electronics Limited, was the first instance of directly sourced L'Oréal products available on eBay. And LOréal partnered with Alibaba, Jingdong, and VIP for e-commerce sales in China, which accounted for 26.4% of the segment’s 2016 sales.

CrunchBase indicates that L’Oréal has neither bought nor invested in any e-commerce companies. Additionally, there is no information in any annual reports, press releases, industry trade publications, or media sources that indicate the company has filed any e-commerce patents.

Online Marketplace

According to its annual reports, L’Oréal does not operate an online marketplace. Its e-commerce sales take place across three channels: partner distributors’ sites (e.g., Alibaba, Jingdong, and VIP); its brand sites (e.g., Kiehl’s and Urban Decay); and pure player platforms (e.g., eBay’s marketplace).

L’Oréal does not operate an online marketplace; however, the company’s L’Oréal Luxe division (comprised primarily of Lancôme, Yves Saint Laurent, Giorgio Armani, and Kiehl’s) has performed very well in Q1 2019 (posting double-digit growth) as a result of e-commerce sales. L’Oréal Luxe and Active Cosmetics saw strong growth in China, through e-commerce sales. This segment also saw growth in the North American and Western European regions through e-commerce via the aforementioned channels.

L’Oréal does not have any partnerships related to the technology needed to run an online marketplace. L’Oréal does not operate an online marketplace. Its e-commerce involves partnerships with distributors (e.g., Alibaba, Jingdong, and VIP) and pure player platforms (e.g., eBay’s marketplace).

CrunchBase indicates that L’Oréal has neither bought nor invested in any online marketplace companies. Additionally, there is no information in any annual reports, press releases, industry trade publications, or media sources that indicate the company has filed any online marketplace patents.

Conclusion

E-commerce remains an extremely dynamic segment of L’Oréal’s sales, boosting growth across all divisions; L’Oréal does not operate an online marketplace. L’Oréal’s e-commerce sales occur across partner distributors’ sites, its brand sites, and pure player platforms. E-commerce drives growth across the L’Oréal Luxe division (comprised of fragrances and beauty). The company has partnered with Alibaba, Jingdong, VIP, eBay marketplace, and Facebook for its e-commerce sales and marketing; L’Oréal has no partnerships involving the technology necessary to run an online marketplace because the company does not run an online marketplace. Similarly, the company has made no acquisitions, investments, or patent filings related to e-commerce or online marketplace technology.

Part
09
of fifteen
Part
09

L'Oreal 9

Based on information found L'Oreal's official website, annual reports, and third party news publications, the company has not partnered with any entity for a loyalty program. L'Oreal has also not bought or invested in any company in relation to its current loyalty program. Regarding retail experience, L'Oreal offers beauty advisers to assist customers in all its brick and mortar retail locations. In addition, the company has designed virtual reality digital features such as its Makeup Genius and Nail Genius apps used both in stores and online. In some of its physical locations, L'Oreal provides interactive devices which look like a mirror. Customers can stand close to it and virtually try on makeup to see what best suits them. However, it has not invested in any company to improve its customer or retail experience. The information has been entered into rows 97 to 103, column E of the attached spreadsheet.
Part
10
of fifteen
Part
10

L'Oreal 10

We have entered the requested details concerning L’Oreal in-store shopper behavior and store of the future in rows 109-119 of the attached spreadsheet.
After searching through several sources including L’Oreal’s annual reports, press releases, industrial publications, and media sources, there is no publicly available information on L’Oreal’s in-store shopper behavior buying, in-store shopper behavior investing, partnership with companies in-store shopper behavior, and any patents filing regarding in-store shopper behavior.
Also, after searching through several sources such as L'Oreal’s annual reports, press releases, industrial publications, and media sources, we could not retrieve related information concerning L’Oreal's partnership regarding store of the future, store of the future buying, store of the future investment, and any patents filing regarding store of the future on public data.
Additional information concerning the research request can be accessed here.
Part
11
of fifteen
Part
11

L'Oreal 11

We have entered the requested details on L'Oreal's Voice and Reserve or Click and Collect technologies on rows 121-132, columns E-F of the attached spreadsheet.

After searching through several sources including L'Oreal's annual reports, press releases, industry trade publications, and media sources, there is no publicly available information on L'Oreal's partnership, acquisition or investment in any company with Voice and Reserve or Click and Collect tech capability. There is also no information on L'Oreal filing a patent for any Voice and Reserve or Click and Collect technologies.

Reserve or Click and Collect technology is used in travel retail and it can be used to purchase any product at retail stores. Hence, the technology is not unique to specific brands.

Part
12
of fifteen
Part
12

L'Oreal 12

In 2017, LÓreal launched a Facebook Messenger chatbot service focused on guiding consumers to buy cosmetics. The bot asks a "series of questions that help define the consumer's cosmetic profile before advising them on different brands and products that suit their preferences and budget." Additionally, the AI chatbot also directs consumers to the right cosmetic gift products for their friends. After thorough research, we have entered the requested information concerning LÓreal in rows 133-143 of the attached spreadsheet.
After scouring LÓreal's digital and annual reports, news publications, M&A databases like CrunchBase, and company profiles, we determined that there is no evidence of LÓreal investing in AI chat bots, partnering or acquiring any company that does fashion and product predictions. However, the cosmetic firm has partnered with Automat Technologies and Facebook for a series of AI-powered chat bots. Additionally, LÓreal runs a technology incubator responsible for predicting the future of fashion and designing future products for beauty.
Also, after searching through several sources such as LÓreal's annual reports, press releases, industrial publications, and media sources, we could not retrieve related information concerning the patents filed for their AI chat bot or fashion prediction solution. Although the company filed 505 patents in 2018, there is no publicly available information to determine which patents were specifically dedicated to AI chat bot or fashion prediction solution.
Details of these findings can be found in rows 133-143 of the attached spreadsheet.

Part
13
of fifteen
Part
13

L'Oreal 13

Through 3D printing, L'Oreal produces small skin samples as part of its beauty cosmetics products. These samples are grown from tissues donated by plastic surgery patients. The company's subsidiary called Episkin, is involved in the sale of the human skin tissues. Based on the company's official websites, annual reports, press releases, and third party news publications, the company has not bought or invented in any 3D printing company. It has only partnered with Organovo and INITIAL. L'Oreal also has a "personalized skincare service" which is called CUSTOM D.O.S.E. It starts with a private consultation with a skincare specialist who then assesses one's skin. The skincare specialist enters this information into the D.O.S.E. machine which releases personalized serum based on a customer's skincare diagnosis. This information has been entered into rows 144 to 155, column E of the attached spreadsheet.
Part
14
of fifteen
Part
14

L'Oreal 14

L'Oreal has an anti-counterfeiting program helps "mitigate the presence of fake products on the market." In order to raise awareness on the identification of counterfeit products, L'Oreal collaborates with multiple stakeholders. L'Oreal also has a team dedicated to its trademarked designs and has serious consequences for people who counterfeit its products. Based on the company's official websites, annual reports, press releases, and third party news publications, the company does not have an anti-theft program specifically for its fragrance & beauty categories. L'Oreal has also not bought or invested in any companies for the purpose of strengthening its anti-theft initiatives. In terms of POS, the company has an eco-design approach for its POS advertising materials and has partnered with ModiFace to better equip its websites and points of sale. The requested information on L'Oreal has been entered into rows 156 to 166, column E of the attached spreadsheet.
Part
15
of fifteen
Part
15

L'Oreal 15

In searching for information related to L'Oreal as it relates to their omnichannel and subscription capabilities, we were able to find interesting information that we placed into this spreadsheet. We summarize our findings below.

Results

L'Oreal partnered with the makers of the YouCam Makeup app, an AR app that lets users apply makeup virtually. With this partnership, users could then access the virtual L'Oreal collections. L'Oreal Paris also developed their own tools for virtually applying makeup which they used to collect data about the habits and behaviors of their customers.

L'Oreal created the L'Or Box in 2016 as a promotion where they hid a ticket that let one lucky winner attend the Cannes Film Festival. We couldn't find any strong evidence that this subscription box was still ongoing, and we found no acquisitions or partnerships for subscription boxes. There were packaging and boxing patents but no indication that they were for a subscription box.
Sources
Sources

From Part 04
Quotes
  • "How augmented reality is revolutionising the beauty experience With augmented reality, marketing and sales practices are transforming to provide consumers with unique and personalised experiences – online and in stores. "
Quotes
  • "For the first time worldwide, L’Oréal will showcase the latest AR technology from ModiFace, a beauty tech company recently acquired by L’Oréal. The new technology allows customers to have a one-to-one live step by step tutorial and coaching with a make-up advisor, virtually try on personalized make-up looks and shop online."
Quotes
  • "Clichy, 9 March 2016 – L’Oréal Paris and Image Metrics are very proud to announce they have entered into a new phase of their partnership regarding the augmented reality app Makeup Genius."
  • "“Makeup Genius brings an obvious added value, a true utility to women giving them access to our large portfolio of products, trying them on, sharing them on their social networks and easily buying them. Entering this new era with Image Metrics will allow us to explore new possibilities and connect more than ever with consumers and offer them an easy, personalized and truly useful beauty e-routine.” says Cyril Chapuy L’Oreal Paris Global President. "
Quotes
  • "Vidsy is currently working across various L’Oréal brands including L’Oréal Paris, Garnier, Maybelline and Yves Saint Laurent."
  • "Slick emerged from L’Oréal’s partnership with London based accelerator and incubator Founders Factory. "
Quotes
  • "We are scientists, engineers, and innovators, with 200+ scientific publications and 30+ patents. Over the past 10 years we have focused on creating the most realistic AR try-on capability for the beauty industry. The result is a technology that will continually revolutionize the beauty industry for the decades to COME"
  • ""
Quotes
  • " We are thrilled to welcome ModiFace to L’Oréal to become the heart of our digital services R&D. With its world-class team, technologies and sustained track record in terms of beauty tech innovations, ModiFace will support the reinvention of the beauty experience around innovative services to help our customers discover, try and chose products and brands. We at L’Oréal and ModiFace want to pioneer this new page of the beauty industry and serve our customers with innovative services and experiences. Lubomira Rochet, Chief Digital Officer of L’Oréal"
  • " L’Oréal’s acquisition of ModiFace provides an incredible opportunity to innovate on beauty augmented reality (AR) and artifical intelligence (AI) at an unprecedented scale, the results of which will shape the beauty industry for the decades to come. Our entire team and I are extremely excited to be joining the L’Oréal family, and look forward to the AR/AI-enabled future that we will create together. Parham Aarabi, Founder and CEO of ModiFace"
From Part 07
Quotes
  • "The virtual try-on feature, which is built into L’Oréal’s site, allows you to try on hair colors and cosmetics before you make the figurative leap and purchase them. "
  • "Thanks to ModiFace technology, the experience is better than any makeup app or hair color changing app we’ve ever seen, allowing you to get a realistic idea of how a color will look on you. "
  • "With the help of our virtual makeover and hair color changer, you can test the biggest beauty trends with zero commitment. "
  • "Once you’re on your computer, tablet, or phone, you can get right to receiving your virtual makeover. Start by finding the products on lorealparisusa.com that you want to try on."
  • "You can either do a live try on using your camera or upload a photo. Click the option you prefer, and when your visage appears on screen, you’ll have a new hair color or makeup look. "
  • "Once you’re “wearing” the new product, you can easily switch between different shades to see which is the best match for your skin tone."
Quotes
  • "L’Oreal announced today that it has acquired Modiface, a company that’s had a hand in the creation of many custom augmented reality beauty apps, including those from Sephora and Estée Lauder. "
  • "L’Oreal didn’t disclose the amount spent, but it did tell Reuters that it now owns Modiface’s numerous patents that help users visualize makeup and hairstyles on themselves."
  • "The partnership makes sense in that Modiface has already worked with L’Oreal multiple times, including on the launch of its Style My Hair mobile app, which lets users try on different hairstyles. For that app, Modiface manually annotated 22,000 facial images to create the experience."