Back to press releases

8 March, 2015

Beauty and wellness majors target lucrative African market

Sub-Saharan African beauty and cosmetics market to reach US$11.8 billion in 2017

Dubai, UAE: Sub-Saharan Africa’s growing economy and favourable demographics have turned the region’s beauty and wellness market into a melting pot of opportunity according to a recent study, with Dubai holding the key to a market that promises a glowing future.

A study commissioned by Messe Frankfurt Middle East, organiser of Beautyworld Middle East, revealed the value of sub-Saharan Africa’s beauty and cosmetics market will grow from US$8.8 billion in 2014 to US$11.3 billion in 2017 - rocketing ahead by 9 per cent annually, compared to the four per cent global average growth rate.

South Africa and Nigeria are at the forefront of the surge the report said, followed closely by the other key African frontier markets of Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Ghana and Cameroon.

With a predominantly young population and growing middle class – the biggest consumers of beauty and wellness products – the African land mass south of the equator is firmly in the sights of leading global beauty brands, many of whom will be rolling out welcome mats for African trade buyers at Beautyworld Middle East 2015.

Taking place from 26–28 May 2015 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, the three-day event has established itself as the prime gateway for international beauty majors looking to do business in new and emerging markets.

“With 70 per cent of its population under 30 at 651 million, and a middle-class population of 300 million, sub-Saharan Africa is rapidly-emerging as a ready market for cosmetics, skincare, haircare, toiletries, and perfumes,” said Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East.

“Beautyworld Middle East, with its wide reach and coverage of the African market in addition to the Middle East, Central and South Asia, provides an ideal platform for exhibitors looking to engage with these highly promising markets.

“The exhibition also provides an unmatched range of the latest beauty products and services from more than 1,400 exhibitors, which will no doubt be widely welcomed by our African trade visitors.”

Messe Frankfurt Middle East’s February 2015 report, called ‘Understanding the East African Beauty Market’, was published by Business Guide Africa, and focused primarily on Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Mozambique.

According to the report, the beauty and cosmetics market in the five countries was worth approximately US$1.3 billion in 2014 and is projected to grow to US$1.8 billion by 2018. 

Hair care products form the largest and most diverse market segment with a variety of competing brands and products, and valued at US$282.3 million in 2014. Consumers also spent US$221.1 million on skincare, US$191.3 million on colour cosmetics and US$146.4 million on fragrances.

Beautyworld Middle East has recently been attracting a growing number of African trade visitors looking to connect with leading international producers and manufacturers of genuine beauty products; in 2014, the dedicated platform saw a 12 per cent increase of visitors from the world’s second largest continent (1,500 visitors).

The opportunities in the populous region are clear, and haven’t gone unnoticed by top European companies who view Dubai and Beautyworld Middle East as the gateway to an untapped market.

Looking for new business opportunities in the region is Italian cosmetics manufacturer Terradisole, which will promote its innovative trichology, styling and sun care ranges at Beautyworld Middle East. Having successfully established their brand name in Italy, the company now has its sights set on the Middle East and Africa.

“We believe that Dubai has become the gateway to the Middle East and Africa for any beauty and wellness company that is looking to expand its activity abroad”, said Alessandro Magnani, Owner and Partner of Terradisole.

“Beautyworld Middle East is our chance to remind the world of the high quality beauty brands with the Made in Italy tagline. We are looking forward to growing our brand awareness, and expect remarkable business growth in 2015 and for many years ahead.”

Spanish company Lakme Cosmetics will also be at the show to enter new markets with its latest haircare range, including dyes, styling, and treatment products.

“We are looking to meet with our importers as well as establish fresh business prospects at Beautyworld Middle East,” said Maurizio Doria Tolle, Manager at Lakme Cosmetics in Asia Pacific, Russia, Middle East and Africa. 

“The Middle East is already one of our major business regions and we are looking for partners to take the brand to other key markets such as those African countries where we are not yet present.”

Beautyworld Middle East 2015 is the Middle East and Africa’s largest trade fair for beauty products, hair, fragrances, and wellbeing, focusing on the key areas of Cosmetics & Skincare; Hair, Nails, & Accessories; Fragrances; Machinery, Packaging & Raw Materials; and Professional Equipment & Spa.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, the industry’s showpiece event is introducing a dedicated Organic and Natural Product Pavilion, while other highlights include the Beautyworld Middle East Boutique; Centre Stage: where beauty begins by Nazih Group; Nail It! by OPI and Nazih Group; Fragrance Station; and the two-day Spa and Salon Summit, taking place from 27-28 May.

Further information can be found at:



  • 2015