01/22/2009, Hamburg


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Name Ada Karul
  Schwarzkopf Professional
Phone +49-40-8824-295100
Fax +49-40-8824-2267
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Schwarzkopf Professional – A passion for hair.

Interview with Norbert Koll, Corporate Senior Vice President Schwarzkopf Professional

1. Schwarzkopf celebrates its 111th anniversary. What does that mean for the hairdresser?
Schwarzkopf symbolizes pride in the past and simultaneously strong focus on the future. Hairdressers choose us as their partner because they want to work with a company that stands for longtime experience, is well-renown and invests a maximum of energy in innovative products and services for the hairdressing business. In difficult times such as these, it is more important than ever to have a strong partner on one’s side. Schwarzkopf Professional is strong and has the competence to help the hairdresser with creative concepts for further success.

2. What role does Schwarzkopf Professional play in the world market?
We belong to the three largest suppliers of hairdressing products and services worldwide and are represented across the entire globe. Schwarzkopf Professional is renowned for its dynamic image; we are one of the fastest moving and fastest growing brands in the international hairdressing market. We enjoy not only an especially high representation in the established European markets but are also market leaders in new market countries such as Russia. The Asia-Pacific region has shown an amazing growth too, whereby the above average successes of China are acting overall as a “growth-motor” for the entire region.

3. What makes Schwarzkopf Professional such an international success?
Our slogan is “Together – a passion for hair”. This claim is expressed in everything we do. “Together” stands for the close partnership between the customer and Schwarzkopf Professional. This partnership leads to innovative products and services inspired by hairdressers themselves that strengthen the salon business.
Our “Passion” - the passion for hair - is what unites the two partners even more. Every day we work to find new innovative and creative solutions that help to make life easier and better for the hairdresser.
“Hair” - Hair is our focus. A strong team and long years of experience in the development of haircare products makes it possible for us to always be one step ahead of the market and offer our clients products that not only promote and inspire their creativity, but also products that are totally trustworthy for the end consumer.

4. How important is innovation to your business?
More than 40% of the company turnover is generated through products and services that have been on the market for less than two years. Albeit that our hair has hardly changed over the course of evolution, the clients’ needs change rapidly and continually. The demands of clients in the salons mirror the current social trends. In times like these, the client requires a mixture consisting of an indulgence program, convenience and nature. This means that the salon client has little time, expects 100% service and quality and expresses the desire for a high degree of naturalness. Our products and services enable the hairdresser to react immediately to the latest trends.

5. What role do trends and design play in your company?
Beside the superb quality, the high-class and modern product design plays an important role. Our products are always an eye-catcher and are widely used as decoration in many of our partner salons. At the end of the day, salons are places for creative get-togethers where it’s all about hair, beauty and fashion trends.

6. Twice a year you launch the Essential Looks Collection. What ideas lay behind it?
At the beginning of each season, we present our latest Essential Looks Collection. By working with key Editorial Stylists who are responsible for creating the hair for the seasonal fashion collections presented at London, Milan and Paris “Fashion Weeks”, we can identify and deliver the latest trend information from the great designers and translate them into exciting and wearable looks for the upcoming season. This direct inspiration from the catwalks is of course unique, as it allows us to show the trends that will be popular on the high street during the forthcoming season. With Essential Looks, we can then deliver these trend forecasts to our clients even before the season starts.

7. What trends does the upcoming Spring/Summer Essential Looks Collection hold in store?
The “111 Collection Part 1” presents four new trends for Spring/Summer 2009 and celebrates at the same time Schwarzkopf’s 111th anniversary. The four trends directions are: 80’s Dance, Glamazon, Sunday Best and Rounded Form.
80’s Dance reminisces on the hottest sport and dance videos of the 1980’s. Glamazon is a look for strong women, inspired by the late sixties and seventies; the emphasis is on feminine glamour and strikingly expressive cuts. Sunday Best is orientated on the girlish Sunday look of the Fifties. Bold colors and smooth, shining hair accentuate the styling. Rounded Form is brushed with a stroke of the futuristic. Here we are talking clear, defined forms, vibrant colors and more masculine looks. This trend was well exemplified in this season’s show from Yves Saint-Laurent. The shooting for this year’s Spring/Summer Collection took place in Berlin, harking back to the motto “Back to the Roots”, not far from where the Schwarzkopf history once began.

8. What are your most innovative products?
With every new product that we release, our aim is to introduce technical or service-related improvements. In the case of some lines or products, the level of innovation is very high, as in the case of Essensity, our new LOHAS-Concept or BlondMe, our concept for Supreme Blonde Hair Quality. An exciting innovation is awaiting us in Spring 2009 with new BC Hairtherapy! The new personalized hair care program with a specially developed technology will take hair care to a new level and rebuild the hair from inside out, for beauty that lasts. More to come soon!

9. Which other products are being released in early 2009?
We will be opening the New Year in January with new Igora Imagine color trends that will bring inspiration to the salons. Igora Imagine stands for inspiration through art and design. Seductive new Igora looks are the result of our cooperation with artists and experts from various fields, such as well-known illustrator Jordi Labanda, who has created the Igora Imagine looks 2009. Later on, our color range Igora Royal will be enhanced through the addition of a new sub-range: With Igora Intense we will be releasing new exciting shades onto the market with incredible luminosity.

10. How does Schwarzkopf contribute to the professional advancement of hairdressers?
Our standardized, worldwide training program offers our hairdressing partners widespread education including basic skills for young hairdressers as well as creative seminars for experienced stylists. There are currently 50 academies worldwide and many partner studios in which we can fulfill the educational wishes of all our partners. In our secure intranet service, our trainers worldwide have access to information in various languages. That enables us to set an international standard that can be followed from Hamburg to Sydney. Our training and educational documents, along with professional tips for all hair related questions, can be found at www.ask-schwarzkopf.com and are available for everybody and just a mouse-click away.

11. Mr. Koll, you have taken over the worldwide Professional business in September 2008. In which direction do you plan to steer Schwarzkopf?
Let me firstly say that I’m really excited with my new surroundings! The hairdressing world is filled with enthusiasm, passion and creativity. Most people from the branch that I’ve talked to couldn’t imagine ever working outside the world of hair. Regarding the development, I believe that we’ve done a lot of things right (innovation, trends, training) and I would like to build upon this success. The most important direction for the company’s development will be cutting-edge innovations, the further growth of Schwarzkopf worldwide and the intensified closeness of our partnership with hairdressers.

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