Gisada’s Arben Ademi: The fragrance innovations to watch for 2024
The perfume entrepreneur forecasts the new technologies that are right about to enter this traditionally conservative industry.
9 Oct 2023

Ademi is the owner and CEO of Swiss high-quality perfume brand Gisada, operating in 58 countries in physical retail as well as in the travel retail sector in renowned airlines, such as Swiss and Emirates. The brand is the best-selling perfume at the major retailers in Switzerland and Germany and the premium line, Gisada Ambassador, grows bigger and bigger on a global stage. When looking from an industry perspective, Ademi points out how consumers are increasingly looking for environmentally friendly packaging and ingredients. To meet these demands, Gisada is ISO-certified and has focused a lot on recycling. 

— We produce and manufacture our perfumes ourselves, so we end up with a lot of leftovers that should actually be thrown away because they are not usable. Since we want to reduce this and attach importance to recycling, we are members of two recycling companies, Bell and Vision and Citeo.

Arben Ademi.

What other things do you see coming?

— Personalised perfumes and fragrance blends are gaining popularity. Consumers want fragrances that reflect their personality and preferences and are willing to pay for customised solutions. We offer discovery sets with small samples for the customers to try out at home before deciding which scents fit them the best. We also see an increased trend in layering perfumes to make them more unique.

If we look at fragrance trends, with 2024 approaching, what do you forecast?

— It is important to note that forecasts for trends in the perfume industry are subject to uncertainty and can be influenced by various factors, including societal changes, economic developments, technological advances, and even geopolitical events. However, when outlining trends and developments, we come back to sustainability and environmental awareness which is just expected to intensify. Consumers will pay more attention to environmentally friendly packaging, sustainable production processes, and ethical sourcing of ingredients. Perfume manufacturers will strive to integrate sustainable solutions into their products. Also, demand for personalised perfumes and fragrance blends will continue to grow. Technological advances could make it possible to tailor fragrances even more precisely to consumers’ individual preferences and needs.

— Digitalisation will play an increasingly important role and fragrance companies will increasingly rely on digital platforms to target customers and drive online sales. Virtual fragrance sampling and augmented reality applications could help enhance the online shopping experience. New technological innovations can revolutionise the way fragrances are produced, marketed, and sold, which could also include the development of new fragrances and production processes.

— Last but not least, consumers will increasingly value transparency and authenticity. Perfume manufacturers will be challenged to provide clear information about the origin of ingredients and production processes. These trends may develop differently depending on the market and target group, and it is important to monitor them closely and respond accordingly, in order to remain competitive and meet consumer needs.

Have you noticed any recent shifts in consumer behaviour?

— The choice of a suitable perfume is a very personal, emotionally driven consumer decision. The customer does not only want a fragrance that smells good but one with which he or she can describe themselves that fits both the person and character. It is no longer enough to have a good perfume, but it must also say something. The ’ambassador’ of the fragrance also plays a big role, due to the strong presence of social networks in our society. The fragrance needs a recognition effect. It is not the fragrance alone, but the coordinated combination of fragrance and bottle leads to a high purchase probability and therefore promotes sales.

Which fragrance innovations would you like to highlight?

— Molecular fragrances are created by using special molecules and chemical compounds that can replace traditional fragrance components. This makes it possible to create unique and unconventional fragrances. Aromatherapy fragrances promote well-being and are gaining in importance. Here, fragrances are combined with specific essential oils to create calming, invigorating or stress-reducing effects, says Ademi. He continues:

— Fragrance personalisation, the possibility of creating customised fragrances, has increased and can be done by customising fragrance blends or adjusting fragrance concentrations to meet consumers’ personal preferences. Sustainable fragrances reduce environmental impact and there are companies moving towards more sustainable sourcing methods for fragrances, including the use of natural or synthetic ingredients that are more environmentally friendly.

— Fragrance product packaging is also becoming more sustainable and innovative. This includes the use of recycled materials, environmentally friendly packaging designs and reusable packaging concepts.

What would you like to see more of in the fragrance industry?

— Sustainability. Many people want the perfume industry to make a stronger commitment to sustainability. This means more environmentally friendly packaging, sustainable sourcing of ingredients, and more environmentally friendly production processes.

— Transparency. Consumers want clearer and more transparent information about the origin of ingredients, production practices and ethical standards of companies.

— Authenticity. The industry should strive to create authentic fragrances that actually use high-quality and natural ingredients, rather than misleading advertising.

— Personalisation. An increased focus on personalised fragrance offerings could increase customer loyalty and improve consumer satisfaction.

— Innovation: The industry should strive to continuously develop innovative fragrances and fragrance technologies to maintain customer interest.

On the other hand, what can we get rid of?

— False promises with less misleading advertising and fewer promises about the long-lasting effects of perfumes when they cannot be kept. Also a reduction of harmful or unnecessary chemicals in perfume formulas to minimise allergic reactions and skin irritation. And also less over-packaging with a reduction of excessive and environmentally harmful packaging to promote recyclable or reusable packaging solutions. Consumer desires and expectations are diverse, so it is important for the fragrance industry to be responsive to the needs and concerns of its customers.

What else are you looking at now?

— The pandemic had a significant impact on the perfume industry, with disruptions in supply chains and changes in consumer behaviour, says Ademi. Many consumers turned to online shopping for perfumes, and this trend is expected to continue after the pandemic has subsided. So, the perfume industry is seeing significant growth in online sales and e-commerce platforms. Brands should invest in their online presence, including virtual fitting tools, to appeal to digitally savvy consumers.

— Companies that adopt sustainable practices, such as eco-friendly packaging and responsible sourcing of ingredients, are likely to resonate well with environmentally conscious customers. There is also a growing demand for clean and natural fragrances. Brands are exploring natural and eco-friendly fragrances to meet customers’ needs for natural products.

— Consumers are increasingly relying on online reviews and social media to make purchasing decisions. Social media engagement and collecting positive reviews can increase visibility and trust in a brand. And, lastly, for storytelling, building a strong brand story and communicating a brand’s heritage and values are critical — consumers look for brands that appeal to them emotionally and whose stories can align with their own values.