Skins Cosmetics: ”Van Duuren is our partner in growth”
Professionalising,” says Henny Krüger, office manager of Skins Cosmetics, “that was my main goal when I started working here.” Skins Cosmetics focuses on the niche market of exclusive cosmetics. In addition to the five shops which sell special brands such as Dr Brandt, Fusion Beauty, Creed and Diptyque, the company also supplies Douglas in the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland and Austria, as well as Ici Paris XL in Belgium.
“We were already working with Van Duuren, but also with other parties for this distribution. Each time it was a question of who would be the cheapest for which consignment.” Henny Krüger soon realised that this strategy was not sustainable in the long term. The distribution branch of Skins was growing rapidly and, in addition, customers place high demands on the way in which cosmetics are packaged. Everything has to be sealed and delivered on pallets. The times of unloading are also subject to strict conditions. Henny: “If you want to get a cheap bargain, you can’t guarantee delivery times. Then you sometimes have to wait until a truck is full. Considering the scale of our distribution, we could no longer afford that. I want to know the lead times in advance. We talked to various parties, but Van Duuren ultimately became our partner in growth.”
“For us, this means that in order to provide an optimal service we often have to find ad hoc solutions,” says Stef Blommaart of Van Duuren. “Christmas is a busy period for Skins Cosmetics, so we often have to send an extra car to France or have a truck make a diversion. Sometimes we have to arrange for a taxi to bring the cosmetics into the shop. Large trucks are not always welcome in the heart of Paris or Amsterdam. ”
Recently Van Duuren arranged for large displays of the Fusion Beauty brand to be changed in eighty Douglas stores. Henny: “Douglas set the condition that the new displays had to be placed cleanly in the right place in the shop. The old display and the packaging material also had to be taken away. I had no idea how to go about this. Then I phoned Stef. He came up with a proposal and a plan almost immediately. Top!”. Other contacts with Van Duuren are also always pleasant, businesslike yet informal according to Henny Krüger. “Everyone who answers the phone helps you out.” Stef, laughing: “Not only is Skins Cosmetics growing, but so are we. The number of employees in our Customer support department has increased significantly, so that we can answer questions more broadly.