Lush: A Rarity in the Cosmetics Industry
"We believe in the right to make mistakes, lose everything and start again.”1
– Part of the Lush mission statement
“Lush is about passion and iconoclasm: passionate for natural products, fresh handmade cosmetics, seductive perfumes, growth and profit, and iconoclastic about everything else.”2
– Angus Jenkinson and Branko Sain, Professor and Research fellow of Integrated Marketing - Luton Business School
“The whole point of LUSH is that it should be fun for our customers and fun for us.” 3
– Mark Constantine, LUSH’s Managing Director
In February 2009, Lush opened its 100th store in the USA. By 2014, Lush had over 830 stores in 51 countries of the world. In 2009 the revenue for Lush was around $595 million. The Sunday Times Rich List 4estimated Mark Constantine’s (co-founder and the man behind Lush) monetary wealth at £505 million.6
Lush started with a single store in 29 High Street Poole with a small team of people who made hand-made cosmetics, using natural ingredients like fruits: oranges, lemons, juices etc purchased in the supermarkets and used them in soaps and other products. From such humble beginnings, the company went on to achieve a phenomenal growth. Although originally formed in the UK, one of the major regions for Lush was North America (50% in Canada and 40% in the USA) where Michael Wolverton controlled most of its operation since 1996. Around $90 million of the company’s global annual sales of the $350 million come from its North American operations only. Lush continued to be a privately owned company (shareholders: Mark Constantine 37%, Margaret Constantine 25%, Andrew Gerrie 12%, others 26%). Lush achieved all this without compromising on its core beliefs and values and standing up strongly for what it believed in. The company was always against using harmful chemicals, animal testing and packaging from the environment point of view. Lush came to be known as one of the good, ethical companies of the world................
2 Angus Jenkinson and Branko Sain, “Lush, the Scent of Success,” www.stepping-stones.org, April 1st 2003
4 The Sunday Times Rich List is a list of the 1,000 wealthiest people or families in the United Kingdom, updated annually in April and published as a magazine supplement by British national Sunday newspaper The Sunday Times since 1989.
5 As of October 2014, 1 GBP was equal to 1.60 USD
6 Cory MorningStar, “Lush’s Dirty Laundry,” http://wrongkindofgreen.org, July 31, 2011