Brazilian cosmetics firm Oceanic has equipped the majority of its franchisees with Fiat Doblo minivans, which are both delivery vehicles AND shops.
Brazilian cosmetics firm Oceanic equipped the majority of its franchisees with Fiat Doblo minivans, which are both delivery vehicles and shops. What are you to do if you’re a cosmetics company trying to sell your wares to tens of millions of female customers, in a country the size of a decent continent, with competitors like Avon and ‘O Boticário’ boasting numerous storefronts and tens of thousands of door-to-door salespeople? Brazilian cosmetics firm Oceanic, which has been in business since 1996, and didn’t have the funds to build a nationwide bricks and mortar presence, decided to go mobile: it equipped the majority of its franchisees with Fiat Doblo minivans, which are both delivery vehicles AND shops. Developed in coordination with Cherto, a Brazilian distribution stratey group, the mobile stores make it easy to target prime consumer locations such as universities, schools, hospitals, parks, and trade shows. Not to mention customization: the mobile store’s inventory can be customized for different locations (i.e. if a franchisee parks near a beach, he or she’d better stock up on sunscreen and suntan lotions!). Oceanic’s minivans also give small entrepreneurs a chance to get started without ponying up massive starting fees: the investment is about 10,900 Real for the vehicle and 5,500 Real for initial store products (1 Real equals roughly EUR 0.31 or USD 0.35). Franchisees are promised a 4-12 month return on investment and 100% gross margins. Oceanic currently has 150 full time employees working from a 7,500 m2 plant and warehouse, which produces 175 different cosmetics products, from perfumes and body lotions to aroma therapy kits. The company hopes to achieve 2,000 mobile stores by 2008.