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Kao – who we are globally

Founded in Japan in 1887 with a mission to enrich people’s lives, Kao's commitment to deliver high quality products that make life beautiful has continued for over 130 years.

This mission is expressed in our corporate slogan “Kirei – Making Life Beautiful”. The Japanese word “kirei” describes something that is beautiful, clean and well-ordered both inside and outside. It expresses the specific value that Kao desires to bring to society: products and services that care for the needs of our consumers while respecting our planet. Kao aims to become an indispensable part of society, as a company making essential contributions to the protection of all life on the planet and enabling a more beautiful life for people around the world.

This is our purpose that goes back all the way to our company´s founder Tomiro Nagase and that we have laid out in our corporate philosophy, the Kao Way. Our commitment has earned us external recognition such as being named one of the World´s Most Ethical Companies for 15 consecutive years.

Our global operations

Globally, Kao has 33,000 employees working across four business fields: Hygiene and Living Care, Health and Beauty Care, Life Care, and Cosmetics. In our Chemicals Business we develop a wide range of chemical products that meet the various needs of industry.

Kao creates high-value-added products that enrich the lives of consumers around the world. Through our portfolio of over 20 leading brands such as Attack, Bioré, Goldwell, JERGENS®, John Frieda®, Kanebo, Laurier, Merries and Molton Brown, Kao is part of the everyday lives of people across the globe. Combined with our chemical division, which contributes to a wide range of industries, Kao generates about 1,400 billion yen in annual sales.

The story of Kao

Kao in EMEA

Across Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) Kao teams focus on premium beauty brands in three areas: Kao Salon Division, the Consumer Care Business and our luxury cosmetics brand Molton Brown. We have over 2,200 people working in diverse teams to bring our customers the latest technologies, beautiful brands as well as providing dynamic and fulfilling careers. Everything we do is underpinned by our philosophy of quality and sustainability.

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