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Kao cuts 40% of cosmetics lineup to focus on Asian growth

Makeup margins lag far behind company's other products like diapers

Kanebo is one of the global brands that Kao will build its portfolio around. The company looks to strengthen premium brands with sharper marketing from beauty counselors inside stores.

TOKYO -- Japanese beauty product maker Kao will eliminate 40% of its cosmetics brands to focus on names popular around Asia and the world as it aims to improve the profitability of its makeup business.

The company will discontinue about 20 labels, such as Dada and Raphaie, out of its lineup of around 50, comprising about 10% of the cosmetics segment's sales. It is encouraging clients and customers to switch to remaining lines instead.

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