The Brazilian presence in Florida can no longer be ignored. According to data from the Consulate General of Brazil in Miami, the Sunshine State is currently home to 350,000 Brazilians. That’s the equivalent of the population of Espirito Santo’s capital city, Vitoria. Brazilian expats move about US$ 5 billion a year and are the immigrant population that spends the most on real estate in the southeast cities of the state, including as Orlando, Miami and Fort Lauderdale.
And Florida is not just attracting Brazilian people, but also companies. “Florida is now one of the largest Brazilian immigration hubs in the US and has long served as a gateway for Brazilian companies and investors, making it easier for them to enter the market and spread the word about the brand to other consumers, including Americans,” says Olivier Chemin, CEO at Jacques Janine.
With over 60 franchise stores spread across Brazil, the beauty salon chain opened its first branch in Orlando in 2015, and wants to expand its business locally. “It’s an ongoing project and we have plans to open new salons,” reveals Chemin.
Operating in the US since 2014, Truss Cosmetics also entered the market through Florida. With headquarters in the city of Sao Jose do Rio Preto, in Sao Paulo state, the professional hair care brand set up shop in Boca Raton. “Florida has served as a laboratory that allowed us to grow to greater heights in America,” says Truss Cosmetics’ CEO, Manuela Bossa.
After two years of adjustments – including changes to its packaging, with screw caps being replaced with flip top caps –, Truss managed to build a team of 25 distributors in eight states. Florida continues to lead the US operation, accounting for 38% of total sales.
The latest Brazilian newcomer in the US is Granado | Phebo. The company launched its international expansion strategy in 2013 with a kiosk at Le Bon Marché department store in Paris. Last year, Spanish group Puig announced its participation as a minority shareholder in Granado and just recently, the company firmed a partnership with multi-brand fashion house The Webster, whose flagship store is located in the heart of Miami Beach.
“It was an irrefutable offer, the type you just can’t say no to. The Webster is a legend of global retail lore offering an impeccable curatorship. It’s the first time a cosmetics brand is promoted in the store. I believe every Brazilian will be proud to know a company from its home country has had such opportunity,” says Nazish Munchenbach, marketing and sales director at Granado | Phebo. She confirmed The Webster’s location was yet another reason to support the company’s decision to get into the US through Florida.
From the partnership with The Webster, Granado has also released an exclusive fragrance as part of its Vintage range – Tropicalia – consisting of bar soap, body wash, moisturizer and scent diffuser. The Tropicalia packaging draws inspiration from old Miami Beach’s signature architectural style, Tropical Deco, and its aroma is described by Granado as fresh and sophisticated. The newly released products are available at The Webster alongside Mediterraneo Phebo and Pink Granado lines.
President-elect Donald Trump’s protectionist rhetoric and anti-immigration policies don’t seem to pose a threat to Brazilian companies planning to expand their business in the US. “Nothing has changed for us,” says Munchenbach. Bossa is also optimistic about Truss’ future in America. “The new government shouldn’t have any impact on the goals we have set.”