Henkel unveils new Asia R&D centre for consumer brands in Shanghai

By Austyn King | Published: 25-Jan-2024

The Schwarzkopf owner will harness consumer insights to develop products catered to Asian markets

Henkel has opened a new Asia research and development centre for its consumer brands in Shanghai, China. 

The Schwarzkopf owner aims to use the R&D centre – a 100 million RMB investment – to develop products specifically catered to different Asian markets based on consumer habits and insight.

It is the company's largest centre in the Asia region at more than 2,500sqm and the new facility is said to be built on the design concepts of “innovation, digitalisation and sustainability”. 

Six areas have been developed to focus on different functions, including the consumer centre, advanced research, product development, packaging design, chemical and physical analysis and product evaluation.

The consumer centre is designed to resemble home environments and hair salons for consumer research to inform product development. 

 “This investment represents a pivotal milestone as the first Asia-based R&D centre supporting product development and ingredient formulation for both business categories,” said David Tung, Regional President of Henkel Consumer Brands Asia.

“Leveraging unique research synergies, the centre is set to shape our portfolio for higher growth, adding substantial value to the Asian market and propelling Henkel Consumer Brands to new heights.”

The centre continues Henkel’s investment in the Asia Pacific region, following the opening of its J-beauty innovation hub in Tokyo last year.

This comes after the German conglomerate acquired Japanese beauty giant Shiseido’s professional business in 2022.

“The new R&D centre, one of our facilities integrated with consumer centres worldwide, will contribute to a robust global research network spanning Europe, North America, the Middle East and Asia Pacific,” added Frank Meyer, Corporate SVP R&D of Henkel Consumer Brands.

“Anticipating the impact of this state-of-the-art facility, we aim to deepen our understanding of evolving consumer behaviours, fortifying Henkel's commitment to pioneering leading-edge technologies tailored for both local and global markets.”

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