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Who we are

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.

Globally, Kao has 33,000 employees working across four business fields: Beauty Care (Cosmetics, Skin Care and Hair Care), Human Health Care and Fabric and Home Care. In our Chemicals Business we develop a wide range of chemical products that meet the various needs of industry. In the region Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) Kao focuses on premium beauty brands across three distinct sectors: Salon, Mass and Molton Brown.

The Kao Salon Division with its master brands Goldwell, KMS and Oribe is the fourth biggest professional beauty business in the world while the Mass business features high quality Hair and Skin Care brands such as John Frieda and Bioré. Expertly blended in London, Molton Brown’s collection of signature fragrances, bath and shower gels, home and hand care luxuries have claimed iconic status.

At Kao consumers come first. With a focus on high-end beauty brands, Kao EMEA continues to build on its success investing in research and development, driving product innovation with a commitment to quality and safety, both for our consumers as well as the environment.

Kao by numbers

Kao by numbers

*“World’s most Ethical Companies” and “Ethisphere” names
and marks are registered trademarks of Ethisphere LLC.

Business sectors

Salon Division

At Kao Salon Division, understanding the needs of our business partners, salon owners and stylists worldwide, is at the centre of everything we do. Thanks to our long-standing history, we support them in their daily challenges and provide solutions which help to elevate them to success.
As each salon client is different and every stylist unique, we offer a comprehensive portfolio of products and services across our salon quality brands Goldwell, KMS and Oribe that meet their differing needs.
Combining Kao's extensive research and development power with a thorough stylist understanding, our brands are driven to constantly innovate.


With iconic brands like John Frieda, Guhl, Bioré and Jergens we offer consumers premium skin and hair care products of the highest quality for the best product experience. Whether it’s specialist formulas that transform demanding hair into amazing hair, or innovative skin cleansing solutions, in the Mass business sector we’re dedicated to listening to our consumer’s needs and helping them be their very best.

Molton Brown

Expertly blended in London, Molton Brown’s collection of signature fragrances, bath and shower gels, home and hand care luxuries have claimed iconic status with vibrant colours and bold scents. Carefully sourcing ingredients from around the world, each creation is intricately composed by some of the world’s finest perfumers for a truly indulgent, memorable experience. Molton Brown are proud to hold a Royal Warrant for the supply of toiletries by appointment to Her Majesty the Queen.

Our history in EMEA

Scroll through the timeline to discover the highlights of the
Kao EMEA story in Europe, Middle East, Africa Region.

Kao globally

Kao Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) is part of the Kao Group, one of the leading consumer goods manufacturers in Japan. Founded over a century ago, Kao is active in four business fields: Beauty Care, Human Health Care, Fabric and Home Care, and Chemicals. With more than 33,000 employees globally, Kao has a total turnover of about 1,500 billion Yen.

The Kao Group has made the Kao Way, the Group's corporate philosophy, the foundation of all of its corporate activities. Our mission is to strive for the wholehearted satisfaction and enrichment of the lives of people globally and to contribute to the sustainability of the world. If you would like to discover more about the Kao Corporation globally and its unique philosophy click here

Kao globally

Kao globally

Kao globally

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