Our ‘Seed To Scent’ Approach Makes A Real Difference…”

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In this edition, ParfumPlus talks to Dominique Bortoloni, Group Area Manager, GCC, Dubai, Robertet to get an insight into the brand, its road ahead and the challenges that were overcome…

FOUNDED IN 1850, ROBERTET Group is a French fragrance and flavour manufacturer specialised in natural raw materials. In this issue, Dominique Bortoloni gives us an insight into what fuels the brand Robertet and its growth.

ParfumPlus (PP): Tell us about yourself and your journey in the world of fragrance.
Dominique Bortoloni (DB): Since my early childhood I have been expatriated in different countries such as Iraq, Nigeria, Singapore, Oman, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. I took my first steps into the world of fragrance when I was living in Iraq, at the age of 5. I used to follow my mother in the souks where the smells of bakhoors and frankincense were always lingering in the air. I think it’s my oldest olfactive souvenir. The memory never le me. It became evident when I started to study Perfumery in Grasse many years later. Oriental fragrances were part of my daily newspaper and much easier to understand because of their richness and their strength. ey never fade! This is how I interpret a fragrance: an emotion that takes you away to your deep memories.

PP: What are the key factors that have influenced the success of Robertet?
DB: There are many; but the most important remains our DNA: Naturals. Then comes our creativity. This is the reason why our claim “from seed to scent” resumes and includes both Naturals & creativity. But it requires a know-how.

PP: Could you share with us a few interesting highlights of the company in the year gone by?
DB: Robertet Group participated in various events worldwide; it enabled us to introduce our new developments and our strength in terms of technologies such as collagen protection and skin hydration by oral ingestion – by our new division Robertet Health & Beauty.And also the numerous engagements in the last 2 years. In Grasse: the willingness of Robertet to perpetuate its activities in its hometown. In India: Joint-venture Robertet Goldfield for Fragrances. And others in New York, Brazil and Singapore.

Masroor Hassan (Left), Dominique Bortomoni (Center), Clarissa Alvarez (Right)

PP: What were the challenges faced in recent years and how did you combat them?
DB: The market scenario and the Force Majeure. Combating both has been very challenging; the different raw material crisis we faced was overall well managed. Thanks to our great management and planning, professionalism and commitment of our purchase department, our perfumers and our factory of course.

PP: Does Robertet have any specific vision for 2020.
DB: It’s a huge opportunity to have the Universal exposition in Dubai! Knowing the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating e Future” it sticks perfectly to our creative industry. Another specific vision is to continue sustainable development and focus on our CSR policy. Our expertise in Naturals – from the culture of plants, the perfect understanding of natural raw materials to the fragrance composition – is based on an integrated sourcing approach respective of both human beings and the environment. Our “Seed to Scent” approach makes a real difference in a world where customers have high requirements of traceability and strict CSR policy.

PP: Do you foresee any major changes in the region where the fragrance industry is concerned?
DB: I am not sure we can talk about major changes. I would rather figure an evolution. Our industry is constantly in move and improving in terms of quality. We undeniably owe this to the combination of the Middle Eastern heritage and the French “savoir faire”. They both have their legitimacy.

PP: Any new strategies in place for the advancement of the fragrance industry in the region?
DB: Our strategy is above all linked to the consumers and their needs which are in constant evolution.

PP: Tell us about the Robertet perfumery school. How can students from the middle east enrol into this school?
DB: There are 2 steps to follow for any student to enroll this school: first, being graduated from ISIPCA and second, being hired by Robertet. Our school is only dedicated to our employees – i.eour young perfumers. They’ll be trained for one year, and followed by a senior in-house perfumer because it is vital for the good of the company to perpetuate in training perfumers who understand our DNA. You know, having a portfolio of wonderful Raw Materials is not enough. This is just our tool: what makes us unique is how we highlight it: know how to formulate with Naturals takes time and patience. An expert knowledge and dexterity are required.

PP: What is the specialty of the raw materials that Robertet is using, which it claims to be its Unique Selling Proposition?
DB: Our perfumers are using raw material that comes from all around the world. They are extracted and blended in our fragrances. It makes our unicity in terms of difference and prices. Robertet sources raw material since 1850 which means a unique know-how for a unique quality.

PP: You have under your umbrella, acti scents fragrances that claim to be soothing, purifying, moisturising and have anti-ageing properties. Can you elaborate on this category?
DB: Aromacosmetics is an innovative R&D program which explores the cosmetics properties of natural perfumery ingredients. It allows us to formulate 2-in-1 fragrances for leave-on & rinse-o products, combining a pleasant scent with cosmetics benefits, that’s why we call them Actiscents®. They are formulated with natural aromatic extracts with supplementary and/or synergic properties, carefully chosen for a specific cosmetic activity. With Aromacosmetics, we meet our consumer’s expectations for more natural ingredients, which activity is validated by in- vitro tests. It differentiates and innovates because the fragrances are at the center of the activity. And finally, it optimizes the cost/performance ratio of cosmetic products.

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