Johanna Monange, Founding father of Maison 21G Shares Her Enterprise Philosophy

What led you to create Maison 21G and inform us extra concerning the progressive idea of bespoke perfumes?

Evocative, distinctive, and memorable, I deeply consider that the fifth sense conjures up profound feelings and connections with others. Your signature fragrance is a lot greater than a mere accent; it’s a true extension of your character, a software to imprint recollections, and convey confidence all through key moments of your life. As such, I consider that your scent needs to be as distinctive as you might be!

In 2020, I conceptualised Maison 21G, supported by my ardour and 25 years of expertise in perfumery as a inventive director working alongside famend designers and perfumers. All through this time, I watched this lovely trade lose its soul and accept one-size-fits-all scents, creating the identical on a regular basis floral, fruity, and gourmand scents for everyone, whereas pushing big advertising and marketing campaigns on the expense of high quality, distinction, and character of what’s contained in the bottle. I felt that one thing was going flawed on this lovely trade, so I made a decision to interrupt free from the glamorous company world and shake the conventions of this sleeping trade.

My imaginative and prescient was to deliver again the “energy of creation” into the fingers of shoppers, providing a singular and fascinating scent discovery expertise. Dedicated to a cleaner fragrance trade, I used to be pushed by a need to deliver transparency, sharing, training, and sustainability to make a greater perfumery world for the following technology. My final mission was to recreate an actual “Maison de creation” for all of us, creating a singular expertise with lovely scent encounters.

The idea of “expertise” is essential for opening and working a boutique. What’s a profitable “expertise” to your clients?

Maison 21G is a Luxury Maison of Creation with fashionable iconic flagship shops worldwide, utilizing a poly-sensorial method to create a singular retail expertise. We goal to create a Luxury expertise in perfumery like no different for our clients. We encourage confidence, self-expression, and exploration in perfumery, with a poly-sensorial method. With 10 flagship shops internationally, each nook of our boutiques is meticulously curated with a sequence of devoted zones corresponding to our well-known progressive scent bar to find and select your elements, the perfumer organ the place shoppers mix their very own scent, and our personal atelier’s areas to be taught the artwork of creation.

We additionally frequently search new expertise to boost our experiential retail choices. As an example according to our dedication to innovation, we provide a singular AI character quiz. Our open app accumulate info corresponding to your pores and skin tone, your scent choice, your values in life, and your required advantages to advocate well-matched scents for every particular person. Our RFID Expertise informs and educates buyers on the origins, the olfactive profile and properties of our scents.

After creating their customized scent, clients can add a private contact by utilizing our complimentary UV Printing Machine to customize their fragrance bottle design. As well as, we offer fragrance workshops for {couples}, staff constructing occasions the place our scent consultants information shoppers in making a personalised perfume in a single hour by appointment.

Our experiential retail area encourages cross-cultural exchanges. And clients come collectively to share concepts and cultures, pushing the envelope of creativity. Maison 21G is dedicated to disrupting the Luxury trade by making a neighborhood of perfume designers, connoisseurs, aficionados, or novices in each main metropolis on the earth, pushed by a singular offline retail expertise, relayed by a powerful digital presence to finish the offline expertise with a devoted loyalty program, and automated reorder providers to your personalised scent from wherever on the earth.

The personalisation of scent is on the core of Maison 21G’s idea? What are the parameters that go into figuring out a bespoke perfume?

Johanna Monange, Founder of Maison 21G

Maison 21G is a model that prides itself on its dedication to craftsmanship, personalisation, training, and expertise. On the coronary heart of our enterprise mannequin is the will to create bespoke fragrances which might be tailor-made to the distinctive character and olfactory preferences of every of our clients. Our flagship shops function laboratories, the place highly-skilled scent designers information clients of their scent creation, making certain that their personalities and preferences are thought-about at each step of the method. We consider {that a} fragrance is way more than simply an adjunct. It’s private, intimate, and turns into your voice to precise your distinctive identification. For this reason we provide our clients direct entry to fragrance concentrates with the very best share of perfume focus to make tailored haute perfumery accessible.

The method of making a bespoke perfume at Maison 21G is interactive, participating and enjoyable: we start by asking clients to fill out our character quiz, which focuses on their values in life, private DNA (nationality, pores and skin color, age), likes and dislikes associated to their olfactive preferences, and the explanations they wish to put on a selected fragrance (to be seductive, elegant, excellent, stress-free, and so forth.). This builds a buyer scent profile that’s distinctive to their identification. We now have outlined 5 distinctive character profiles, every with its personal distinctive ingredient suggestions. For instance, an “Spectacular character profile” will want a fragrance that initiatives strongly, with long-lasting sillage, and options daring woody, oriental, and spicy notes. A “Social Fanatic Profile” alternatively, will probably be extra drawn to softer, comforting, and caring notes corresponding to musk, vanilla, and light-weight juicy fruits.

With the usage of cutting-edge expertise, leveraging AI alongside extra conventional abilities, we’re revolutionising the fragrance trade by understanding the wants and tastes of every nationality, tradition, and technology. The extra clients we get, the extra highly effective our AI turns into, and the extra exact the suggestions reveal themselves to be. As a bottom-to-top method, we’re capable of be taught immediately from our buyer base and reply instantly to new shoppers developments in every capital like Seoul, Shanghai, Paris, and elsewhere. It’s a game-changing method for the fragrance trade, and the extra we develop, the extra educated and concise we’re capable of develop into in tailoring scents to people.

Workshops are on the very core of the Maison 21G DNA. What’s your favorite reminiscence of a Maison 21G workshop you organised in 2022?

We consider within the energy of scent to deliver individuals collectively, and our workshops are designed to supply an unforgettable and distinctive sensory expertise. It’s a enjoyable and exploratory expertise, the place individuals can reconnect, share, and find out about one another by means of scent.

One among my favorite recollections is from a Love Atelier that we organised in 2022. Throughout this workshop, the couple had the chance to take their like to the following degree! A younger man stunned his girlfriend with a wedding proposal. He had requested the scent designer to print “Marry Me” on the bottle that he had created for her. As he offered her with the bottle, he received down on one knee and revealed a hoop hidden contained in the field. Your complete room was moved to tears by this romantic gesture. In that second, I used to be reminded of the ability of scent to create deep and significant connections, and I used to be grateful to be part of such a particular second of their lives.

Inform us extra concerning the sustainability efforts behind all of the packaging and glass bottles used at Maison 21G? You appear to be amongst the very first Luxury homes speaking brazenly about recycling and the reuse of fragrance bottles.

At Maison 21G, our sustainable pillar is built-in into every part we do. Our deal with eco-consciousness, moral and clear manufacturing and distribution, is a part of our dedication to excellence, high quality, and Luxury. In an trade the place the usage of buzzwords and advertising and marketing jargon to ‘greenwash’ merchandise is rampant, we attempt to be clear, trustworthy, and open about our sustainability practices.

To realize our sustainable targets, now we have partnered with IFF-LMR (Laboratoire Monique Rémy) to supply the very best high quality of perfumes. IFF’s vertical integration permits us to regulate each step of our elements provide chain, and its adherence to particular sustainable and clear standards, together with environmental accountability, honest working situations, and constructive relations with native communities.

At Maison 21G, we pleasure ourselves on being clear and open about what we embody in our bottles and what we don’t. Our scents are 100 per cent vegan, cruelty-free, CMR-free, paraben-free, phthalate-free, and preservative-free. We additionally formulate our scents as biodegradable to scale back our environmental impression.

We consider in creating merchandise which might be recyclable and refillable. We now have banned the usage of plastic in any of our merchandise. We’re the primary firm to have refillable bottles, encouraging buyers to reuse their bottles, with reductions and incentives for individuals who reuse, recycle, and scale back their waste. By committing to eco-consciousness, moral manufacturing, clear sourcing, Maison 21G is taking steps in the direction of a greener future for all.

You might have expanded your product vary and Maison 21G now provides inside its boutiques perfumed candles, the very begin of an elaborate residence scent assortment. How is it performing?

Picture: Maison 21G
Picture: Maison 21G

The pandemic introduced unprecedented modifications in our life, with individuals spending extra time at residence than ever earlier than. At Maison 21G, we recognised that buyers have been on the lookout for methods to make their residence setting extra comfy, inviting, and reflective of their personalities. This impressed us to launch our sustainable, pure, and customisable Residence Scents vary, and we’re delighted with the way it has been embraced.

Our Residence Scents vary was launched with the identical daring and disruptive method that characterises our fragrance vary, and is underpinned by a dedication to wellness, together with all-natural elements that may assist clients chill out, focus, and sleep extra successfully. We consider that folks should unlock the scent of their soul, and our Residence Scents vary is designed to make that course of straightforward, pleasing, and eco-conscious.

The gathering contains our lovely 100 per cent pure wax Twin Candles, Bespoke biodegradable Reed Diffuser, and pure Oil burner which permit clients to decide on and mix their favorite scents in fashionable and opulent ornamental objects, a premiere within the Residence Scent world. As with our personalised perfumes, we put the client on the coronary heart of the creation course of and set it aside from all of our rivals.

We consider that the data to create a good looking, wholesome Residence Scent for the entire household, needs to be accessible to everybody.

E-commerce is rising quick throughout all continents. We see your staff working laborious on rising the worldwide digital presence of Maison 21G. How are on-line gross sales performing for you?

Maison 21G’s experiential on-line e-commerce completes the offline expertise with a devoted loyalty programme and automated reorder providers for personalised scents from wherever on the earth. We provide bespoke inventive experiences to anybody, wherever, with our DIY inventive set, which we are able to ship to any location throughout the globe. Our totally customised web site permits a singular and playful inventive expertise at residence.

Our lead magnet, the AI-Powered Quiz, guides shoppers in creating the proper scent combos on-line based mostly on their character, tradition, age, and totally different wishes for a fragrance, corresponding to freshness, class, and seduction. The twin-scented crayon permits individuals to attempt mini scents earlier than buying a full bottle. As we speak our fragrance followers on-line who can not entry to our outlets have grown considerably. Lots of people are uninterested in off-the-shelf scents and have leapt on the probability to craft their very own scents from sustainable and high-quality elements on our bespoke web site. Our model promise of pure, clear, and ethically sourced essences has resonated strongly. Our core buyer base consists of Millennials and Gen Z shoppers from Asia, US, Canada, Australia, and Europe, in search of personalised merchandise with an experiential edge on-line. By way of varied activations with on-line campaigns, direct advertising and marketing, and a devoted, inclusive, engaged, and lively neighborhood of scent designers, now we have constructed a loyal buyer base that shares our ardour for creativity, high quality, and sustainability.

Inform us about your newest growth within the Center East with the opening of a boutique in Dubai and a long run partnership with the Chalhoub group. This all sounds very promising!

We’ve been thrilled with the responses from the Center East shoppers since we launched Maison 21G. Perfume is only ingrained into their tradition, and it’s wonderful for me to precise the DNA of my model there. I’m personally passionate concerning the Center East market, and now we have thrilling plans for the area with the help of the distinguished {and professional} Chalhoub Group.

In Dubai, I’m all the time impressed by the variety of cultures and the pure inventive instincts of the individuals I meet. They’re so stylish and take wonderful care of their picture and scent identification. Dubai has no boundaries, and I like the grandiose and multisensory experiences discovered at each nook of this buzzing worldwide capital. We’re trying to increase our presence in Dubai but additionally Abu Dhabi, with a deal with opening extra shops in key selective high places like Bloomingdales, Tyrano, Malls of the Emirates, and past.

In Qatar, we’ve simply opened a good looking flagship retailer within the model new luxurious mall of Vendome, subsequent to all essentially the most luxurious manufacturers. We’re now increasing and have established partnerships with prestigious shops corresponding to Printemps, Galerie Lafayette, and Harvey Nichols, with a inventive scent bar idea. We’ve been overwhelmed by the kindness and keenness of the individuals for our lovely elements and experiential ideas.

My greatest problem now could be to beat Saudi Arabia, with the opening of our flagship retailer in Nakheel mall. We all know it’s a demanding market by way of high quality and repair, with a big base of fragrance connoisseurs and aficionados. Nevertheless, we’re assured that now we have every part at Maison 21G to make an impression there. I’m personally concerned in each side of the shop opening, and we’re dedicated to offering the very best high quality services and products to our clients in Saudi Arabia and throughout the Center East.

Fragrance is an inseparable a part of Center Jap tradition. What perspective in the direction of fragrance have you ever seen amongst Center Jap shoppers?

The Center East is revered to a excessive diploma and perfumery rooting in historic practices. As an example, the Persians have been the primary to make use of distillation in extracting oils from flowers to create lovely essences that solely Center Jap individuals have the tradition to understand. Who would’ve identified that a long time, centuries later, fragrance utility nonetheless stays an important ritual of their every day lives.

Famend for essentially the most aromatic of traditions — smouldering incense, burning bakhoor, utilizing ritualistic important oils, and aromatic teas — it’s no marvel why the language of scent creation applies on many ranges of their tradition. From a religious strategy to anoint oneself earlier than prayer to epitomising a private fingerprint, deep recollections of their life, a press release of themselves; fragrance is a strong software in characterising one’s individuality right here.

With absolutely the strongest olfactive preferences globally, the residents of the Center East search a daring, distinctive scent and positively above-average longevity. Furthermore, their conventional method contains layering a number of opposing scents. Most prevalently, they use spices, earthy patchouli, deep resins and amber, sensual oud, floral rose Taif, all to create essentially the most elaborate, unique, and astounding compositions distinctive to themselves, which they will discover at Maison 21G. Our idea of making your personal fragrance is completely tailored to Center Jap shoppers who’ve been layering and mixing scents for many years. They recognize the artwork of fragrance making and have a deep understanding of the complexities of making a singular scent that displays their character and magnificence.

After opening boutiques in Vietnam and South Korea, what’s your subsequent essential initiatives and developments throughout 2023 & 2024?

South Korea is a key marketplace for Maison 21G in Asia and success on this nation can have a major impression on our model’s fame and growth in Asia. As a result of South Korea is thought for being a trending marketplace for Luxury manufacturers, attaining success there can set the tone for the remainder of Asia, together with nations corresponding to China, Thailand, and Vietnam. Shoppers in these nations could also be extra possible to concentrate to a model that has already confirmed itself within the aggressive South Korean market.

Subsequent for me is to proceed increasing my model selectively in Asia with experiential retail, sustainability, and training. I’m dedicated to opening extra flagship shops, store in store in Luxury malls, counters in responsibility free areas, to deliver our distinctive expertise to each main capital.

My subsequent greatest problem for 2023-24 will probably be China the place now we have a really formidable plan with Everlasting group. We’ve already opened a good looking retailer in Hainan with Lagardere and can quickly be opening flagship shops in Shanghai and Shenzhen, in addition to partnering with stylish distributors who perceive and may categorical our model DNA. To achieve stylish Gen Z and Millennials, we’ll additionally deal with digital platforms like Tmall, Weibo, Little Purple Ebook, and WeChat, translating our AI quiz and selling our hero merchandise in Chinese language.

In China, shoppers have a comparatively quick historical past with perfumery and are wanting to be taught concerning the elements, uncover their preferences, and develop their very own scent fashion. They’re additionally involved in studying about perfumery suggestions and methods, together with what scents to put on for various events and the variations between high- and low-quality perfumes. The pattern in the direction of area of interest perfumery in China displays a need amongst shoppers to precise their identification and individuality by means of perfume, in addition to a rising appreciation for high-quality, artisanal merchandise. This pattern is partly pushed by a need to face out and be totally different from the gang, with distinctive fragrances that can’t be present in mass status perfumes. Chinese language shoppers are additionally more and more involved in unconventional scents with characters that permit them to precise their edgy fashion.

To adapt to those totally different expectations, Maison 21G will tailor our advertising and marketing method and providers to Chinese language shoppers. That is the power of our personalised method, which isn’t solely tailor-made to the person but additionally to the tradition and context. We put excessive effort into localising our method, contemplating the cultural and historic context of perfumery in every market and the way this influences client preferences and behavior to succeed worldwide. The period of “one-size-fits-all” fragrance and super-centralised advertising and marketing is certainly over, and I’m excited to be on the forefront of this new method to the trade.

The place do you see Maison 21G in 5 years down the street? Any IPO deliberate forward?

Grow to be the primary tailor-made perfumery model globally.

The model goals to problem ready-made merchandise and set up a brand new phase within the perfume trade: the Tailor-made Perfumery phase — after the shock of Area of interest Perfumery. We intend to have iconic Homes of Creation in key perfume capitals worldwide to put in this new phase through the model’s robust credentials in design, innovation, and sourcing new pure elements for our scent designer neighborhood.

We repeatedly enhance our service and coaching of Maison 21G scent designers, presumably constructing an academy of perfumery to share data and experience. We now have initiatives in Web3 to tokenise our distinctive fragrance creation recipes, which can forestall copying and grant possession to our loyal clients, preserving their creativity at Maison 21G.

We additionally plan to accomplice with different industries corresponding to artwork, culinary, music, lodges, and mixology to create polysensorial occasions.

To help the imaginative and prescient and mission, Maison 21G will proceed to boost sensible cash with greater traders to problem the normal fragrance trade, acquire sustainable market share and develop into essentially the most fascinating fragrance model.

We wish to preserve the authenticity of what they do so long as potential, supported by lively funds and monetary companions who perceive the significance of disruption, branding building and innovation to satisfy the brand new shoppers’ wants in perfumery.

How did you react to the acquisition of Tom Ford by the Estee Lauder Group in November 2022 for a hefty US$2.8 Billion price ticket (together with debt)?

This acquisition of Tom Ford is a strategic transfer that strengthens Estee Lauder’s high-end Luxury magnificence portfolio. Tom Ford has established itself as a number one model within the perfume and cosmetics market over the course of a number of a long time and has a major presence in essential development markets such because the Asia-Pacific area and journey retail. Their success in disrupting the fragrance trade years in the past is noteworthy. This acquisition is a testomony to the worth of constructing a powerful model picture with progressive merchandise, reaching untapped shoppers, and being led by a daring, robust founder.

Maison 21G goals to observe in Tom Ford’s footsteps by making a Luxury inventive model picture with progressive services and products that may attain untapped shoppers. We attempt to be a challenger within the high-end Luxury phase of the perfumery trade, specializing in personalisation, sustainability, and an experiential method to create your personal scents. Our dedication to creativity units us aside from rivals, and we’re always pushing the boundaries with new expertise and machine studying to raised perceive the wants and tastes of our clients. We’re daring and unafraid to disrupt the fragrance trade, bringing transparency and openness into an trade sorely missing in disruption.

What are the commanding valuation ratios within the magnificence and fragrance trade?

Valuation ratios within the magnificence and fragrance trade are decided by a variety of components, together with an organization’s dimension, development potential, profitability, barrier of entry, expertise, robust USP and model picture. When an organization has a powerful model picture and a disruptive method, it tends to have greater valuation ratios. Within the magnificence trade, it isn’t unusual for bigger corporations to pay as much as 10-12 instances an organization’s income in the event that they see potential for development and growth.

So for small magnificence corporations, the important thing to attaining excessive valuation ratios is to problem the normal enterprise mannequin and create a powerful, disruptive worth proposal with excessive barrier of entry and agility, that bigger corporations can not simply replicate with their established constructions. It’s certainly tough for bigger corporations to innovate as they should steadiness danger and sometimes have heavy constructions to navigate.

This creates important potential for acquisition and improvement with huge teams, as they search out progressive and disruptive corporations to boost their portfolios and acquire market share.

Within the fragrance trade, by disrupting the trade with new and progressive concepts, small corporations have an enormous potential for acquisition and improvement with huge teams and doubtlessly command excessive valuation ratios within the course of.

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