Estée Lauder invests in generative AI with Microsoft

By Austyn King | Published: 29-Apr-2024

The owner of MAC and Clinique will harness AI technology to boost its NPD and marketing capabilities across its portfolio

Estée Lauder Companies (ELC) is ramping up its investment in artificial intelligence (AI) technology, in partnership with Microsoft.

The companies’ AI Innovation Lab will harness the technology to improve ELC’s product development and customer experience capabilities across its beauty brands, which include MAC, Clinique and Estée Lauder.

This includes an internal chatbot across ELC’s portfolio, which the beauty owner said will allow it to efficiently utilise its customer data to faster respond to beauty trends and customer demands.

It will also assist the company in faster launching marketing campaigns relevant to local markets.

ELC will also use generative AI to boost its NPD capabilities, which it claimed will enable it to faster develop new products and respond to emerging product and ingredient trends.

"At ELC, technology is always in support of our enduring strengths of high-quality products and high-touch consumer experiences," said Jane Lauder, EVP of Enterprise Marketing and chief data officer at ELC.

"With Microsoft's generative AI tools and extensive expertise, we are able to leverage ELC's tremendous data to create more personalised consumer experiences and faster insights to action, resulting in increased speed to market and stronger local relevancy.”

ELC first partnered with Microsoft in 2017 and has worked with the tech giant on projects including its Voice-Enabled Makeup Assistant app, designed to help visually impaired users apply make-up.

"Generative AI represents a significant opportunity for the beauty industry – creating more engaging customer experiences, getting products into the hands of consumers faster, developing new products more efficiently and sustainably and much more," said Shelley Bransten, corporate VP, Global Industry Solutions at Microsoft. 

"We're proud to collaborate with ELC to provide not only a platform for AI innovation, but also deep partnership to bring these new innovations to life."

The beauty industry is increasingly tapping into AI to enhance its product innovation and customer experience. 

The Inkey List recently launched a personalised AI-powered acne analysis tool, using real-time facial analysis and visual mapping technology to deliver personalised skin care advice.

Meanwhile, AI-empowered ingredients were a prominent trend at trade show in-cosmetics Global with manufacturers harnessing the technology to develop and select ingredients.

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