Spanish market fighting the good fight

Published: 1-Sep-2014

Spain has endured a tough couple of years and local beauty consumption has yet to return to pre-recessionary levels; however, Spanish labels continue to deliver

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Spain is part of Europe’s ‘big five’ in the field of beauty and personal care. However, in recent years it has appeared rather diminished and Spanish sales continued to decline in 2013. Statistics from market research firm Euromonitor International show the beauty and personal care sector slid a further -1.3% last year to reach just under US$9.27bn.

This was due in part to the country’s extremely high unemployment rate impacting consumer confidence. And although some green shoots of recovery are now visible – the number of jobless in Spain dropped quicker than expected in Q2 2014, for example – unemployment still stands at a formidable 24.5%. Another factor impacting the Spanish market is its shrinking population (2013 marked the second year in a row), thereby reducing the pool of consumers.

However, Spain’s situation is not without its silver linings. Local spend may have decreased, but exports of Spanish-made cosmetics rose 11.8% 2013, according to a report from Spanish cosmetics industry body Asociación Nacional Perfumería y Cosmética (Stanpa) and market research firm Nielsen. Indeed, in 2013 the value of Spanish exports topped €2.5bn for the first time. Moreover, Spanish cosmetic and perfumery products are present in 85 countries around the world, with the top ten destination countries being Portugal, France, Germany, the UK, the US, Italy, Russia, the Netherlands, the UAE and Poland, according to Stanpa.

Regarding retail distribution, Stanpa data demonstrates that Spanish consumers are increasingly opting to buy goods from pharmacies at the expense of FMCG stores. The biggest losers, as far as C&T retail channels are concerned, were professional hairdressers, while parallel to this, the number of Spanish consumers buying beauty goods via professional aestheticians is on the rise.

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