Paul & Joe was founded by French fashion designer Sophie Albou in 1995 and by 2002 she had expanded into the cosmetics field, recognising that while her fashion lines were extremely high end and expensive, she could make the brand more accessible and affordable by delving into the beauty world. She has not looked back since. The cosmetics arm of the company, Paul & Joe Beauté, has gone from strength to strength and the collections it produces, featuring designs such as covetable cats and stylish swans, have developed an almost cult following with customers storming shops to get the latest wares and items being traded on eBay for ever increasing amounts.
Toshi Ogaito is the international business development director for Albion, the Tokyo-based company which has the licensing rights to sell Paul & Joe Beauté. Shoichi Kobayashi, president and ceo of Albion, used to live in France and was acquainted with Sophie Albou and her family, so this is possibly where the first connection between the two brands was made.