In June, Moroccanoil announced the appointment of Jay Elarar as chief executive officer. Elarar began his career with Moroccanoil as director of sales in 2012, when the company was only five years old, and was later promoted to global vice president of sales.
Elarar will spearhead new product innovation and strategies for bringing products to the market while optimizing global operations at the company. We asked Elarar to share his vision for this new chapter of the company.
MODERN SALON: What is your ninety-day plan for Moroccanoil? What are you chomping at the bit to bite into?
JAY ELARAR: Right now we’re putting our marketing muscle behind an exciting new product launch: the Color Depositing Mask Collection. These argan oil-enriched, temporary color masks are an important brand extension for Moroccanoil, as they build on our leadership in hair care as the pioneer in oil-infused beauty, while marking our first foray into products that color the hair. These masks are all about care meeting color, since they deeply condition the hair with apricot kernel oil and our proprietary ArganID™ technology, while depositing beautiful temporary color. We’re also forging ahead with other products in the development pipeline, and continuing to optimize global operations at the company.
MS: You’ve always been true to the salon professional—how do you put them front and center?
JE: Stylists are essential partners in our business, and it is always our goal to bring customers into the salon for the complete Moroccanoil experience. We maintain long-term, meaningful dialogue that wins the hearts and minds of the professional stylist through a dynamic approach that includes the Moroccanoil Academy, educator network, trade partnerships, and a strong digital presence.
We help boost foot traffic with the salon locator on our website and gorgeous in-salon merchandising to spark customer interest. We recently launched the Moroccanoil Professionals website, which has a wealth of resources, from instructional videos to class offerings and more.
In 2020 we’re taking our support for professionals to a whole new level with the new and expanded Moroccanoil Academy in New York City.
MS: Very interesting to read in the press release that you will be “leveraging high-growth channels within eCommerce, Travel Retail, Retail, and International markets”—can you talk a bit more about that and expand a little?
JE: We’re making a big investment in our e-commerce platform, with a website relaunch coming soon and more engaging content online. This allows us to engage our consumer directly while offering detailed product information, reviews, and more.
Travel Retail continues to be a strong growth channel, as it places Moroccanoil products in high-traffic locations for discerning consumers who value convenience without sacrificing luxury. In addition to airports throughout North American and Europe, we recently launched in Mumbai, Turkey, Russia, Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina, and are currently focusing on Asia Pacific airports.
MS: How do you work at being socially responsible and environmentally sustainable?
JE: Running our business responsibly has always been a core value at Moroccanoil. We do not test Moroccanoil products on animals, or allow third parties to do so, and our core line of shampoos and conditioners is sulfate, phosphate, and paraben-free.
Moroccanoil is on a journey of continuously improving the sustainability of our practices. We already use solar power at our production facility and incorporate post-consumer recycled material into an increasing range of our product packaging, including up to 50% recycled glass in the bottles that hold Moroccanoil Treatment—and our newest launch, the Color Depositing Mask Collection, is packaged in 50% post-consumer recycled plastic.
Moroccanoil is also partnering with the Parsons School of Design to hold a design competition where senior students will create environmentally conscious packaging solutions for Moroccanoil products. We are embarking on other R&D efforts to reduce our environmental impact even more, and we recently appointed a new Sustainability Manager to help lead the way to a more sustainable future.
MS:Your academy is going to be BIG news. What can you tell us about it?
JE: The new Moroccanoil Academy space will house the education team in a state-of-the-art, 8,500-square-foot facility in midtown Manhattan in 2020. It will strengthen our commitment to the professional stylist, helping to build engagement, awareness, and excitement around the brand. The Academy will also provide a creative space for innovation and product testing, and raise the level of education and artistry with everything we do.
MS: When Moroccanoil launched, it was a phenomenon. It also had a very large presence at trade shows—what is your take on trade shows, today?
JE: When we launched with just a single product—the original Moroccanoil Treatment—trade shows allowed Moroccanoil to connect directly with the salon professionals who became the brand’s first ambassadors. Trade shows are still an important part of our professional distribution channel, as they allow us to build engagement and enthusiasm for the brand, offer educational outreach and essential product knowledge, and cement relationships within the industry. Right now we’re redesigning our booth to make an even stronger impact at trade shows—for Moroccanoil and for our partners—so stay tuned for news about this exciting development.
MS: Finally, what would you like your elevator pitch for the brand to be in ten years?
JE: Our goal is to be recognized as a leader in sustainable practices within the beauty industry, using our platform to take meaningful action, share this message, and leave behind a better world for the next generation—all while remaining true to our core values of creating effortless beauty with innovative, high-quality products and connection with our consumers and stylists.