Douglas announces start-up competition winners

The Beauty Futures – The Douglas Innovation Pitch final

German beauty retailer Douglas has named the three winners of the third iteration of its start-up competition Beauty Futures – The Douglas Innovation Pitch.

The competition opened for submissions in August and aimed to bring new brands, technologies and sustainability initiatives to the company. Beauty Futures was open to start-ups and companies in three areas: Beauty Brand, Beauty Technology and Green Retail. The third category was new to the competition and was in response to increased demand for sustainability in retail.

Beauty Futures – The Douglas Innovation Pitch jury members including (left to right) Douglas Chief Marketing Officer and Douglas Own Brands Executive Vice President Susanne Cornelius, Douglas CEO Tina Müller and Douglas Chief Digital Officer Vanessa Stützle, Douglas CEO Tina Müller, Douglas Executive Vice President of Assortment and Purchasing Isabell Hendrichs

The Beauty Brand category focused on skincare, make-up, fragrance, nutritional supplements and haircare solutions. Meanwhile, Beauty Technology was aimed at start-ups that use data management, artificial intelligence or augmented reality to develop new solutions that can be applied in retail stores, online shops, apps or social media. Green Retail asked for new ideas that can improve sustainability initiatives in retail with beauty products.

Some 196 start-ups from 23 countries submitted their ideas to the competition. One winner was chosen for each category. The winners are:

  • Beauty Technology: Dominik Burziwoda (Founder & CEO) and Cäcilie Lotz (Marketing Product Manager) of MillionFriends/Perfood (www.millionfriends.de/perfood.de). Burziwoda and Lotz’s winning solution provides consumers with personalized nutritional advice. Their patented technology analyzes a person’s glycemic response to food which helps to improve their quality of life and well-being.
  • Beauty Brand: Carina Heidi Hader (Founder cebeha2 GmbH & Inventor nayca) and Bruno Klaus Hader (Entrepreneur) of cebeha2 GmbH | nayca (nayca.de). The Haders’ idea, called “nayca – the warming heart against menstrual pain,” is a slim, hot and reusable warming heart that helps relieve menstrual pain.
  • Green Retail: Jessi Baker (Founder & CEO) of Provenance (provenance.org). Baker won for her software solution. The British start-up Provenance offers clients a software solution for sustainability communication. The technology helps brands and retailers communicate social and environmental impacts, including labels such FSC labels and female-owned business, among others, directly in an online shop.
The Beauty Futures – The Douglas Innovation Pitch winners

Douglas will offer the three winners marketing and sales opportunities. For example, The Beauty Brand category winner will have the opportunity to sell their product on the international Douglas beauty and health platforms. Meanwhile, the Beauty Technology and Green Retail winners will have the chance to apply their solutions to Douglas’ e-commerce operations, online shop or stores, following a testing process.

The winners were selected following a process consisting of several phases. First the jury reviewed the entries and compiled a list of potential winners. Douglas employees then helped to select the finalists in an online vote. A short list was then composed and the jury selected the winners during the final held on November 12 at Douglas’ headquarters in Düsseldorf.

The jury included six industry experts, in addition to four Douglas management team members including Douglas Chief Marketing Officer and Douglas Own Brands Executive Vice President Susanne Cornelius, Douglas Executive Vice President of Assortment and Purchasing Isabell Hendrichs, Douglas CEO Tina Müller and Douglas Chief Digital Officer Vanessa Stützle.

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