OPI Products knows some women like to make a statement with their 20 collective finger and toe nails. The family-owned company is well known for whimsical nail polish names, such as Not So Bora-Bora-ing Pink, I'm Not Really A Waitress, Got A Date To-Knight!, and Who the Shrek Are You? The firm offers 200 nail colors among its product portfolio. In addition to nail polish, OPI also makes and markets nail care and skin care products. The company peddles its products primarily through salons and specialty beauty stores throughout the US and in about 70 foreign countries. The company's brands include Nail Envy, Avoplex, Feet, Garden Party, Avojuice, and Nicole. OPI was acquired by fragrance giant Coty.
The takeover affords OPI the benefit of Coty's well-established customer base and solid distribution system, as well as its financial resources. For Coty, adding an established nail polish maker enables the fragrance firm to expand its presence in the nail care category through professional salons, which represents an important new distribution channel.
While it caters to consumers in the US, OPI has been expanding aggressively on the international front. The UK is its largest foreign market, followed by Japan and Russia. During the next few years, Japan is expected to surpass the UK to become OPI's biggest overseas market.
The nail polish industry has been under pressure to make its polishes more consumer friendly. To this end, OPI removed the chemical toluene from its nail polish formula in recent years, saying it had discovered other ingredients that work better in the product. The company had eliminated another controversial ingredient called DBP in 2006. OPI is looking to replace formaldehyde, which is still in some of its nail products as a strengthener.
President and CEO George Schaeffer purchased a dental supply business in 1981. Upon realizing that manicurists were frequenting his shop to buy acrylic porcelain for artificial fingernails, Schaeffer decided to apply his knowledge of dental technology to create product lines for nail technicians. OPI released its first line of nail lacquers in 1989.
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