Earlier this year, there was a lot of hype around the beauty box subscription business. In January, we saw Australia-based bellabox closing an A$1.3 million (US$1.2 million) Series A round. Indonesia’s Lolabox was also launched by former Rocket Internet executives, with the backing of GRUPARA, one of Indonesia’s most active private equity fund.
Around the same time, Taiwan’s online beauty industry has also seen some activities. Japanese venture capital firm CyberAgent Ventures has put their skin in the game by investing in Taiwan based Fashionguide, a beauty and cosmetics social networking platform. Beauty sampling platform VanityTrove also commenced its consolidation in the Southeast Asia market with its acquisition of Rocket Internet’s Glossybox in Taiwan.
While we haven’t heard much since then, a recent beauty box subscription business based in Malaysia caught our attention. The Lilac Box, which sends boxes of premium beauty products to its users, has been receiving a lot of love from its subscribers. The company launched their first box back in January, and it was sold out in three days. Two months later, the first 100 of the second box were sold in two hours. The third Lilac Box was sold out in under 36 hours since it was launched. While there are no public information about how many actual boxes were sold, Lilacbox’s Facebook page shared that the first 400 boxes were sold in the first 27 hours, hinting that the total number of boxes could be between 500 to 600 boxes. Earlier last week, the company has just delivered their fourth Lilac box, and it was received with great reviews, as shown in their Facebook photo comments.
Each Lilac Box cost MYR49.90 (US$15.20), including delivery, and is only available in the Western Peninsular Malaysia.
If there’s one problem that the company is facing now, it is that the team is unable to keep up with the demand of the market, a clear sign that the company is investment ready. If you missed out any of the previous boxes, the only way for you to get your hands on The Lilac Box is to sign up and wait for the next box.
While The Lilac Box is not the first company to attempt a similar model in Malaysia, it is definitely one of the first few to prove that the model might actually work there. Earlier last year, a similar company, Fabulous Find, which claims to be the first beauty box subscription company in Malaysia, launches only to be closed few months later.
Consumers are always on the look out for better ways of discovering new products, and beauty boxes definitely provide them with a cheap way to experiment with new brands. Adding on the surprise element and the brand devotion to only great quality brands, The Lilac Box has definitely found the soft spot of female consumers.