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At the heart of the business

We like to think of R&D as the heartbeat of the business. Kao was founded on a technical innovation over 130 years ago, so unsurprisingly innovation remains at the heart of what we do. Our many success stories start with our commitment to embrace the new, to be curious, to always ask ‘Why’ and to collaborate with teams within the business and with associated universities, experts and business partners around the world.

Success through collaboration

The R&D team at the Kao European Research Laboratories has 150 researchers and 20 professional stylists, focusing on the development of hair care products mainly for the Salon. A unique aspect of how we work is the ongoing, close collaboration of our scientists and stylists who ensure we make every product better and better. We only launch after rigorous testing, when we know we have it right. With R&D centres spread around the globe, with different competencies, strengths and expertise, this kind of seamless collaboration is key to our success. All our teams, across the business, work together, sharing the innovations, technological breakthroughs and discoveries they make.


A truly global function – Map of Kao R&D locations.

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