Recalibrated the KGB, he made a fortune in cosmetics

He must first climb over a jumble of sample bags laid on the soil, to acclimate to the tags on the walls, paths to the bomb by the boss in his own office in Moscow, and stumble on a bust of Vladimir Putin dressed as a sailor, before you realize that one has set foot in one of the finest commercial successes in post-soviet Russia, Natura Siberica. The business of cosmetology is preparing to present a new line of products called ” Siberia-my love “, which was designed for France, on the land of L’oreal, nothing less.

The brand is one of the only ones to have emerged after the collapse of the USSR outside of the oil sector or the computer, and its founder, Andrey Trubnikov, 58 years old, is not a little proud to present the catalogue of the exhibition dedicated to tsar Peter the Great, which served as the setting for the first meeting between Vladimir Putin and Emmanuel Macron, at Versailles, in may. On the page of the sponsors, alongside behemoths Gazprom or Total, was also part of Natura Siberica. An exception in an economy still dominated by the legacy of the past, its oil and its military-industrial complex.

With a turnover of 9 billion rubles (130 million euros), the company was certainly not the size of oil tankers, but, in a sector that is perfectly ignored in Russia until now, its success the distinguished. Single owner (with his ex-wife), Andrei Trubnikov, exports throughout Europe, especially in France, where, since 2015, the brand is distributed by Monoprix. It has four factories in Siberia, another in Estonia, and employs approximately 4 000 employees.

Consummate art of marketing

With consummate art of marketing, he was able to especially develop products based on wild plants, certified by foreign agencies, such as Ecocert, the French specialist in products from organic agriculture. Shampoo with sea-buckthorn wild in the Altai, anti-age-base…

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