UAE fragrance market sees recovery, greater diversification


Fragrances within the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region are currently worth $4.8 billion, and are expected to grow at a CAGR of four per cent over the next five years
Fragrances within the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region are currently worth $4.8 billion, and are expected to grow at a CAGR of four per cent over the next five years

Dubai - Large Internet penetration has led to social media marketing becoming a prominent strategy adopted by fragrance companies to increase product awareness, and this has had a direct correlation with the surge of the fragrance market in the region


Rohma Sadaqat

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Published: Wed 8 Sep 2021, 4:32 PM

Last updated: Wed 8 Sep 2021, 6:23 PM

The UAE’s fragrance market is surging ahead in full recovery mode, driven by a wave of direct to customer sales over digital channels that strengthened their online presence during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Beauty experts highlighted that this trend has been observed over the GCC and Middle East region, where the size of the fragrance market is forecast to reach $4.4 billion by 2027, with a CAGR of 7.4 per cent from 2020 to 2027. Reports compiled ahead of the Beautyworld Middle East 2021 exhibition, also showed that fragrances within the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region are currently worth $4.8 billion, and are expected to grow at a CAGR of four per cent over the next five years, after witnessing a decline of 12 per cent in 2020 due to the effects of Covid-19.

When it comes to factors responsible for the recovery of the market, recent research as shown that social media has played an intrinsic role, as the decrease in opportunities to visit brick and mortar stores has encouraged companies to use social media platforms to showcase various products. NDP Group conducted a consumer survey which revealed that over 50 per ent of consumers were buying perfumes as a ‘treat for themselves’ with another 20 per cent using fragrances as a gift for others.

Aram Boyadjian, sub regional sales director, at International Flavours & Fragrances Inc, said that the rapid overtake of the pandemic onset various changes such as portfolio diversification. “Selling direct to the customer via online channels, including social media is key in this day and age.”

“Using social media tools, and with the rapid increase of online shopping, customers are extremely tuned into exactly what they want and are very selective in choosing the correct fragrances for themselves. The pandemic has widened the window for digital platforms and we have developed digital strategies to fulfil the needs of our customers,” added Shaikh Mohammad Ali Saeed, CEO at Shaikh Mohd. Saeed Est.

Experts also noted that while fragrances are loved by both men and women in the region equally, unisex fragrances are quite significant, due to their cultural significance. In the GCC countries, such as the UAE and KSA, unisex fragrances dominate the market. Consumers appreciate and admire oriental fragrances, which are by nature unisex, especially oud, sandalwood, amber, musk, and rose.

Many consumers, like to layer both oriental and western types of perfumes together. However, this trend was impacted due to Covid-19 because of the limited number of events and outings. Due to the cultural significance of fragrances and its usage, many western fragrance ranges include oriental fragrances or are including oriental notes in their composition.

Another emerging trend has been the rise of scented candles and how that has directly impacted the fragrance market. According to a new report published by Allied Market Research, the scented candles segment is anticipated to garner a larger portion of the home fragrance market share. This is due to the consumers using scented candles to enhance the aesthetics of homes and to reinforce health and wellness. The availability of innovative designs, colour, and sizes of scented candles has driven sales rapidly. The scented candle segment accounted for the highest market share in 2018, growing at a CAGR of 5.9 per cent from 2019 to 2026.

“Anything that has to do with making a home a more enjoyable place is changing the marketplace at the moment. The demand for home sprays to scented candles is increasing rapidly,” said Nick Vinckier, head of Growth at FACES.

The 25th edition of Beautyworld Middle East 2021 will take place on October 5-7, 2021 at the Dubai World Trade Centre, with thorough health and safety measures in accordance with the official government and local authority guidelines.

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