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UK body spray maker Confetti maps Gulf expansion

Confetti's 'perfume in a can' is entering the UAE and Saudi market
  • Confetti’s ‘perfume in a can’ aimed at budget-conscious consumers 
  • Company launched in Dubai in January, Saudi is next 
  • GCC personal care market set to be worth $1.8bn by 2027

Gulf countries may be synonymous with luxury but there’s a gap in the fragrances market for lower cost products, according to Ori Leslau, founder and chief executive of Confetti Group.

The UK company is about to launch in the UAE, then in Saudi Arabia later this year. 

Marketed as “perfume in a can”, Confetti’s products save on the expensive packaging of high-end scents but contain the “highest concentration of fragrance of all products in their price category”, Leslau told AGBI.

They retail for between $3 and $5 a piece and are more akin to body sprays, placing Confetti in the personal care segment alongside bigger brands like Unilever’s Dove or Lynx, rather than in perfume. But they’re not antiperspirants or deodorants, Leslau emphasised. 

The group was set up in 2016 and has three brands – Confetti London, fragranced body sprays for women; Riggs London, sprays for men; and EnGarde, a range of antibacterial skincare products.

They sells across 25 countries through duty free shops, onboard airlines, and in a limited number of stores, and its target demographic is aged between 16 and 40.  

Confetti is launching in the UAE in the coming weeks, targeting budget-conscious consumers by selling its products in one of the country’s best-known international supermarket chains. Leslau said he is not allowed to name the company until closer to the launch. 

Ori Leslau, founder and CEO of Confetti Group

Confetti then plans to expand into Saudi Arabia, the Gulf’s biggest market, through a similar deal with a large supermarket retailer.

Other GCC markets may follow depending on success in the UAE and Saudi, but Qatar and Kuwait are less interesting for the group because consumer demand there is focussed on luxury, said Leslau.

The Middle East and Africa’s beauty and personal care market was worth around $33 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach $39 billion by 2025, according to Euromonitor research.

In the GCC, total revenues in the beauty and personal care segment reached $1.2 billion in 2022 and are projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10 percent between 2023 and 2027 to exceed $1.8 billion, with personal care the largest segment, according to data from Statista. 

Leslau believes the personal care segment needs more choice in fragrance format and price – and the UAE, with its diverse mix of nationalities, cultures and demographics, is a perfect “launchpad” for new products in the region.

He said: “Open trading laws in the UAE make it easy for companies to export their products, targeting all these types of consumer, but the market is cluttered.

Leslau added that tighter import and export laws in Saudi Arabia resulted in a lower penetration of fewer, better quality options, and a bigger market opportunity.

Confetti’s body spray range contains both fresh and fruity fragrance notes to appeal to Western consumers, and more traditional Arabic scents such as its maple spray for women, and the Riggs oud sprays for men. 

Leslau plans to create products that straddle both worlds.

“The GCC is well served for the mid-to-high end of the fragrance market but lacks options at the lower end,” he said.

“I see opportunities to carry out granular analysis of what is trending in the region, take those ‘notes’ and create something new.”