Shelley Sullivan, has been pioneering in beauty since the early 90s, when the 21-year old Shelley Barrett set up her own modelling agency, Shelley’s Management Group. The company represented more than 1,800 models for over eight years. A decade later she saw a gap in the market for innovative, dual-purpose beauty solutions and founded her own beauty brand ModelCo (2002). Her distinct point of difference was her experience working with models and makeup artist on shoots who would concoct and improvise creatively. If what they needed on photo shoots and ‘behind the scenes’ wasn’t available, they made it themselves. The first ModelCo product was a ground breaker – the heated eyelash curler followed by the world’s first aerosol spray tan.
Today, in 2019, MCoBeauty has evolved out of the success of ModelCo championing the luxe for less beauty category with a range of purposeful, cruelty-free beauty solutions for $30 or less, working especially closely with Woolworths, across Australia. It comes under Sullivan’s umbrella of The Innovative Brands Group.
“The Innovative Brands Group is a brand builder. Technology has enabled the global consumer to find brands that deliver what they want. This has been great for the consumer and great for the industry. Technology is however only one of many contributors that go into a good cosmetics business. We have 20 years of experience and are in search of brands that we believe have a unique offer. We will help them reach their potential,” says Shelley Sullivan, CEO & Founder. The first two cosmetics brands owned by the IBG are ModelCo and MCoBeauty, both creations of Sullivan.
MCoBeauty has been created to dominate this accessibly price premium beauty category. It is a complete, purposeful range that has clearly been developed with the customer in mind, she explains. “The MCoBeauty range has a price point that makes it available to everyone. We have not compromised quality rather tailored the range to products that allow a lower price point, and then we focused our attention on making the products the best in the market.
“We have gained enormous insight to our loyal customer base because of our global collaborations, retail expansion and investment in e-commerce. We have some very exciting brand developments and product innovation coming to our customers in 2019!” she says.
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MCo – the makeup breakaway line from ModelCo – now stands as a brand in its own right. Launching the latest line-up to beauty media, the team reveals the sales stats in its major retail partner – Woolworths, where it is the No.1 selling cosmetics line – have driven the business decision to focus on MCo as a stand-alone brand. Brand pillars are: cruelty free, accessible and luxury-for-less. Fashion drives 30% of NPD while the core range appeals broadly to the 15-45 demographic. Seen here: Michelle Singh – Brand & Marketing Manager with Bonnie Gilles @ozbeautyexpert @mcobeauty #luxury4less #makeup #makeuptrends @woolworths_au #wooliesbeauty
Sullivan has famously not got to where she is today by standing still. Over time, IBG will look to acquire brands that strategically fit in the portfolio. The IBG also has a bespoke marketing division that manages brand collaborations and licencing deals with global beauty, fashion and lifestyle brands. She explains that the recent success with fashion label Karl Lagerfeld has seen other global icons approach IBG for ideas around differentiation.
“Our products are consumables that just about every adult uses and loves. We have some exciting deals coming up. Whether it’s a collaboration, gift with purchase or a white label license deal, we have great ideas on how other brands, from just about any industry, can leverage cosmetics for the benefit of their customers”, says Shelley.
MCoBeauty’s makeup range launches seasonal collections with 30% of the new launches being driven by trend, Michelle Singh – Brand & Marketing Manager tells esprit. “New for Winter 2019 are a mini razor for ‘peach fluff’ facial hair; there’s a winged eyeliner stamp and a beauty balm makeup remover. There’s never any compromise on quality but the price point stays under $30 – a brand pillar – and always cruelty free.” NPD is led by Social Listening, so we understand what consumers and media think about the brand, she says. “We have an ethos of being driven by the customer”.
Feature image courtesy of @mcobeauty