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Business

Cosmetics maker plans $250M research base

TOKYO -- Japanese cosmetics company Shiseido is to build a large research and development facility in Yokohama, pouring more than 30 billion yen ($248 million) into the project.

     Shiseido hopes to boost group sales above the 1 trillion yen mark by 2020, compared with the 762 billion yen it earned in fiscal 2013. It sees R&D spending as a key to improving its competitiveness.

     The center, which is to open after 2018 in Yokohama's Minato Mirai business district, will conduct basic dermatological research expected to lead to new skin care and makeup products.

     Shiseido plans to raise its ratio of R&D outlays to total sales to 2.5%, or 25 billion yen, by 2020, compared with 1.8% or 13.5 billion yen in fiscal 2013. It is preparing to set up a new research facility in Shanghai as well. At home and abroad, it aims to increase its total number of researchers to 1,500, from 1,000 now.

     The company's researchers will strive to develop products that meet different needs in the U.S., Europe and Southeast Asia.

     Shiseido curbed its R&D spending in the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis. Its ratio of R&D expenses to sales is lower than those of its domestic competitors, such as Kao's 3.7% and Kose's 2.4%.

(Nikkei)

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