China’s fragrance market has long been dominated by international brands such as Chanel and Dior. As young consumers become more interested in domestic brands and unique scents, niche Chinese fragrances are on the rise. Investing in the sought-after brand Documents secures L’Oréal’s goal to expand its influence in the local market as China’s niche fragrance market continues to grow rapidly.
Through Shanghai Meicifang Investment, L’Oréal’s China fund, the Chinese luxury perfume house and the French conglomerate reached an agreement. With Documents as its first venture, L’Oréal established Shanghai Meicifang Investment in May.
This round of investment was led by Cathay Capital’s Consumer Co-Creation Fund, a partnership between Kering, L’Oréal, and Pernod Ricard. Shanghai Meicifang Investment’s minority was part of Documents’ Series A investment round of over USD 1.4 million.
Product development, global expansion, and business operations will be the aim of the investment. L’Oréal recently made this decision as part of their action plan to enhance local cooperation.
“Documents is not only an emerging pioneer in the Chinese high-end personalised beauty market, but also a Chinese fragrance brand popular among young Chinese shoppers for its signature oriental aesthetics,” said Fabrice Megarbane, CEO of L’Oréal China and President of L’Oréal North Asia.
The fragrance brand Documents was founded in 2021 by Zhaoran Meng, former chief executive officer of Nudake China. In only two years, the brand has established itself as a premium niche fragrance brand. Documents are particularly popular among high-consumption Gen Z and millennials. It is estimated that 60-70 percent of a brand’s clientele is Gen Z.
Described as “the most expensive Chinese perfume brand”, Documents uses Chinese ingredients such as star anise, mugwood, yulan magnolia, and walnut. As of now, the brand operates two stores in Shanghai and one at Beijing’s SKP-S shopping mall. Recently Documents developed an avant-garde fragrance line targeting Gen Z with fragrance manufacturer Givaudan.