“LR Health & Beauty, a leading company in the European network marketing industry, will enter into the Korean market by establishing a branch in Seoul in December,” LR Health & Beauty Korea CEO Andreas Grootz recently said.
In an interview with The Korea Post, CEO Grootz said, “Korea will be the first Asian market for the German-based LR Health & Beauty to officially launch a branch.”
He said that almost all products to be sold in Korea are “made in Germany”, maintaining a strict quality control system through independent research institutes.
“Although LR has a product range of more than 300 single goods, we will start with 13 products in Korea, which are our top sellers in Europe,” said CEO Grootz.
Noting that 13 products will be sold in earnest with our know-how on the ratio of ingredients suitable for Europe's top "Aloe Vera" reputation, he said, “If our launch in Korea makes a success, we will also examine which next Asian country will be opened.”
The following are excerpts from the interview with LR Health & Beauty Korea CEO Andreas Grootz.
Question: Europe’s leading multi-level marketing enterprise, LR Health & Beauty finally has come to Korea! Could you introduce LR to Korean audiences?
Answer: LR Health and Beauty (LR) is a German-based company with 35 years of heritage. We are proud to count more than 300,000 people to our salesforce and with 750 employees in the headquarters in Ahlen and 1,100 employees around the world.
LR is one of Europe’s leading and biggest direct selling companies. We have been operating in 28 countries in Europe including Russia, Kazachstan, Ukraine and Turkey. LR has an internal R&D department as well as its own production site where the vast majority of our top-ranked quality products are manufactured. Almost all our products are “made in Germany” and we are always taking care of following high German quality standards which are testified by third parties such as SGS Institute Fresenius or Dermatest.
In addition to remarkable product quality, further pillars of our success are our outstanding car program with Mercedes Benz, a fair and unique career plan, which was particularly amended to be in line with Korean culture as well as the collaboration with well-known celebrities.
Q: I heard that LR has over 18 years of expertise in Aloe Vera products. What makes LR Health & Beauty so special in this product segment?
A: We use Aloe Vera in both of our main product segments, health and beauty. What makes LR very special is that with the years we have formulated many products in our own Research and Development department. In addition, lots of our health and beauty products are produced in our own facilities. We are particularly proud to have opened in 2018 the largest and most modern production facilities in Europe for Aloe Vera nutritional supplements. Up to 20,000 liters of Aloe Vera Gel can be produced a day here. The Aloe Vera production site boasts a special Skywalk where visitors can follow the entire production line within the high-tech plant from the 40-metre long and glazed gateway.
Q: I heard LR has more brands in addition to your flagship brand, Aloe Via. Can you briefly introduce them?
A: Alongside with LR Aloe Via we have LR Lifetakt and LR Zeitgard as flagship brands. With LR Lifetakt, we provide health solutions with the best from nature and science. Individual solutions for every stage of your life and a holistic health management are characteristics of this umbrella brand.
With LR Aloe Via, we serve products with exceptional high levels of Aloe Vera content for intense care and regeneration of your skin, with very mild and beneficial care. These products are made for the entire family, from head to toe and from young to old.
With LR Zeitgard we have designed an exceptional anti-ageing management system, with high-tech devices in high quality for your home, and we offer products shaping a care system with an immediate improvement and visible results.
Q: “More Quality for Your Life” is LR’s aim and responsibility. What “More” means to LR?
A: There are different levels to interpret the “more” in our purpose slogan “more quality for your life”: Using our products means you are doing “more” for your health and beauty. Due to our unique, specially designed career plan, we do “more” for our sales partners’ income and lifestyle. If you can afford “more” you may feel “more” of freedom, family, possibilities, etc. And we as LR always strive to provide the best products and best career plan as well as best opportunities to our partners. To achieve these goals, we have to do one step “more” than other companies do. I will give you later an example as regards the product quality.
Q: LR has been successfully operating its business in 29 countries with a wide range of H&B product portfolio. How many products do you serve globally, and which ones of them have been launched in Korea for the first phase?
A: All in all, LR has a product range of more than 300 single products. Most probably, we will not launch every single product in every market. In Korea, we will start with 13 products, amongst them also our top sellers in Europe. We have studied and examined the Korean market thoroughly, including consumer and partner needs, and then bundled the products for the start in four different solution concepts for their wellbeing. After the soft launching, we will introduce more and more products within 2021. I am sure and also hope that Korean consumers will be surprised and excited about which extraordinary and innovative LR products are to come within the next months!
Q: What makes you choose Korea as the first Asian country to begin business?
A: When we visited Korea for the first time, we were amazed not only by the country and people but also by how good the market conditions met to what LR is offering: (1) products “made in Germany”, produced in our own production facilities, (2) high priority on LR’s “homestead”, health & beauty products, (3) acceptance of and being familiar with direct selling industry in general alongside with stable and mature framework conditions, for example, by having regulations on direct selling, and last but not least (4) Korean peoples’ attitude and willingness to aim at making “more” out of one’s life, which fits to our products as well as our career plan. We are also convinced that Korea will play continuously an important key role for LR’s further expansion success in Asia.
Q: I can see diverse certification marks on LR products, which I think very interesting and unique. Can you elaborate more on the meaning of these logos?
A: In our 35-year-old history, highest standards and top quality have always been our top priority. LR is not satisfied to provide quality to an extent that it is legally appropriate but instead, LR always wants “more”! We have different means and ways in order to meet our own requests and standards, one of which is to certify the extraordinary quality of our products by independent third parties. For instance, we are allowed to use the “SGS Institute Fresenius” logo. SGS Institute Fresenius is an independent, top ranked and very large food and supplements product quality control institute. Our Aloe Vera Drinking Gels are the only Drinking Gels which are certified by SGS Institute Fresenius, which underlines our product quality. Other important logos proving our product quality are the IASC (International Aloe Science Council) and Dermatest, a well-known cosmetic testing institute.
Q: It seems that LR strives to research and further develop traditional ingredients from nature, including Aloe Vera, Cistus Incanus, and Propolis. How does LR add values and create new and effective health and beauty products?
A: LR is a sustainable acting company with extraordinary products. Our products have to be both: fitting to the needs of the markets and consumers by containing combined ingredients which make our products unique in the sense that consumers are benefitting from and with them. Through a deep-dive research, we figure out the optimal formula for blending natural ingredients and organic, herbal essence that enable the best taste and effects.
Q: Amid the pandemic, public’s attention on the immune health has risen more than ever. Can you introduce some products that are good for immune system enhancement?
A: Yes, indeed. From our experience the pandemic has caused many people to think about their personal behavior, lifestyle, nutrition, and overall health condition. And LR can give the exact answer with our Seasonal Support bundle that consists of Aloe Vera Drinking Gels, Pro 12 Capsule, Vitamin C Plus Capsule, Cistus Incanus Tea, and Micro Silver Plus Hand Gel, to enhance the immune system.
Q: In Korea, brick-and-mortar health & beauty retailers have been dominating the market, and more and more consumers recently started to buy health & beauty products online amid the pandemic. What is LR’s strategy to win this competitive market as a direct marketing company?
A: We simply follow our philosophy to provide “more”: We have many products in our product pipeline which exactly serve the purpose to provide “more quality for your life”.
Q: How do you expect the wellness industry to grow in Korea?
A: This is hardly to predict and individually, I cannot give a solid and qualified answer on this. My personal guess is that Koreans remarkably focus on health and beauty. The pandemic may even stress this focus – so there still is a high potential for a wellbeing company to develop.
Q: What is the goal of LR in the Korean market both in short and long term?
A: Our first goal is to have a successful launch for which we have excellent tools: on the one hand, top quality products “made in Germany”, and on the other hand, LR’s unique and best in class career plan for Korea. When we came to Korea and examined the market circumstances and prerequisites, we decided to go with a very strong and attractive binary plan into the market because binary plans are very common, accepted and successful. Therefore, we have shaped and designed a brand new, tailor-made career plan to meet local requirements and acceptance which is also a unique possibility for sales partners to become “founding members” of the very first hour.
We as LR have consciously decided to launch Korea as our first Asian country: familiarity with the direct selling business model itself alongside with a strong and solid legal environment, high significance of health & beauty related products and topics, great importance of products “made in Germany”, the high dynamic and willingness of people to have success from the beginning, which is easy to reach with our career plan as well as the “can-do-attitude” of the people – this all makes us absolutely confident not only to have chosen the right market to start with in Asia. We are also convinced that Korea will play continuously an important key role for LR’s further expansion success in Asia. This will be our next aim: Once Korea is successfully launched we will not only focus on enhancing our business on a daily basis, we will also examine which next Asian country will be opened. Due to the “100%-fit” Korea provides to LR’s business model, products, and incentives, Korea will definitely play a significant role in Asia for LR within the next years.