Avon Expands R&D in China with Shanghai Facility

Avon Products Inc. announced that it plans to open a regional R&D center in Shanghai. It will be the company's largest R&D facility outside of the United States. Located in the Jinqiao Hi-Tech Park, the 40,000 ft2 building will encompass six floors and have additional capacity to expand Avon's overall scientific capabilities in China and Asia.

The center will house scientific experts in the areas of product development, safety and quality testing, microbiology, chemical engineering and consumer research. Additionally, according to a press release, the center will enable Avon to grow and leverage its R&D alliances in China as well as hire and retain world-class scientists. The center is expected to open in late 2010, and will primarily serve China but also support other markets in the Asia Pacific region. It will report directly to Avon's global R&D center located in Suffern, N.Y., USA.

"We believe that our expanded R&D presence in China will enable us to be closer to consumers and ensure that we leverage our scientific talent effectively to meet the needs of Chinese women," stated Andrea Jung, chairman and CEO of Avon.

Avon's chief scientific officer, Janice Teal, PhD, said, "We're very pleased that this beautifully designed regional R&D center in Shanghai will allow us to continue our heritage of offering Chinese women first-to-market, breakthrough beauty technologies, including our highly successful line of Anew antiaging skin care and Avon Color cosmetics products. In addition, it will enable us to build upon our innovation leadership position in China, particularly in the whitening category, and across the Asia Pacific region, well into the future. This new facility will also create a close integration and synergy with our regional brand marketing center in Shanghai, consumer research function in Asia and China, and our China marketing operations."

Avon also has regional R&D facilities located in Argentina, Brazil, China, Japan, Mexico, Poland and South Africa. In China, Avon currently has a regional R&D facility in Guangzhou, which conducts research activities for cosmetics and nutritional supplements. The research capability for cosmetics will move to the new regional R&D center in Shanghai, while research for nutritional supplements will remain in Guangzhou.

The new regional R&D center in Shanghai will feature state-of-the-art meeting rooms and laboratory spaces specially designed to create an environment of collaboration, team work and creativity.

"We've learned through our experiences at our state-of-the-art R&D center in Suffern which opened in 2003, that a well-designed working environment stimulates scientific inquiry and helps generate the best and most innovative ideas in leveraging breakthrough technology for the benefit of consumers," said Teal.

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