The weak performance in the first half of the year, aggravated by the truckers’ strike in May of this year were pointed by Abihpec – Brazilian Association of the Personal Hygiene and Cosmetics Industry – as factors that affected market performance. Even so, the entity believes in the usual optimism of the end of the year and predicts a real growth of 1.5% to 2% in the sector’s revenues in 2018.

Abihpec’s chief executive, João Carlos Basílio, assessed that this performance designed for the year frustrates initial expectations. “It has been a difficult year, but we expect growth even in an environment affected by the strike, the World Cup and the elections,” he said.

Despite the low real growth of the industry as a whole, Basílio pointed out that there are more favorable expectations for some categories, such as perfumes and children’s products. He pointed out that in times of crisis, perfumery benefits from the growth of the direct selling model.

Abihpec’s projection is for an 8% growth in perfumery sales in 2018. “The segment has a large share in direct sales and this is a channel that grows in the crisis due to social factors,” he commented. Higher unemployment tends to increase the number of sellers in companies that operate with this kind of door-to-door sale, he said.

Abihpec has surveyed 30 leading industry associates, compared to expectations for 2019, and most companies in the industry expect to accelerate sales growth. Industry executives expect on average growth of 4.1% in 2019, although a forecast for next year is difficult, given the uncertainty in the political scenario. However, if stronger growth is confirmed next year, the personal hygiene and cosmetics sector will have resumed the same level of sales in 2015, before the crisis.

Basílio da Silva also highlighted the expectation of 12% growth in exports of the sector to 173 countries, worth US $ 630 million. For 2019, the agenda of the Beauty Care exportation project, developed jointly with Apex – Brazilian Agency for the Promotion of Exports and Investments – foresees a diversified agenda, with 106 companies associated with the project traveling to the main world fairs, such as Cosmoprof of Bologna in 2019 (55 companies in a 900-meter booth), in-cosmetics Global, to be held in Paris from April 2-4 and Beautyworld Middle East Dubai, from April 15 to 17, where products for the hairs are the most traded.