Iran's growing cosmetics market is one to watch in the future

Published: 7-Apr-2017

Iran’s growing economy, plus an appetite for beauty products among Iranian women, signal that the country is potentially a major market to watch in future, as Poorna Rodrigo discovers

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With a large and youthful population – more than half of its 78 million citizens are under the age of 35 – and an economy tipped for growth of more than 5% this year, Iranians are driving growth in the Middle East cosmetics market.

Iran’s GDP growth for 2017 is projected to reach 4.8%, compared with 4.2% in 2016. The market is also growing quickly in terms of diversity. According to recent statistics released in December 2016 by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the Islamic Republic of Iran, almost 50,000 different brands of beauty, toiletries and health care products were imported and authorised for sale last year since March.

In comparison, 7,320 beauty and personal care products were made in Iran by local producers, according to the Iranian FDA. While these local goods comprise just a fraction of imports, they are growing in popularity.

According to Senior Consultant Hoda Hosseinifar from market consultant ILIA Corporation, US$350m worth of cosmetics products were produced in Iran in the year to March 2016. Iranian companies are keen users of social media and online resources to launch marketing campaigns and solidify their position in the market, she says.

“For instance, MY is one of the most popular brands in Iran; it started producing products 14 years ago and has gradually increased its share in the market,” she says. The MY brand belongs to the Iranian company ACT Cosmetics, which produces products specially designed and packaged for Iranian consumers, using natural ingredients.

Big Brand Opportunities

Brands exporting to Iran include Italy’s

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