Shiseido just opened its new APAC headquarters in Singapore’s CBD – complete with innovation lab, training facility and a centre for customers with ‘serious’ skin concerns

Jean-Philippe Charrier, president & CEO of Shiseido APAC, and Philippe Lesne, president & CEO of Shiseido Travel Retail, at the opening of Shiseido’s new Singapore “office hub” on Jan 15, 2018.
Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Japanese personal care and cosmetics giant Shiseido has unveiled a new 59,000 sq ft “office hub” in Singapore that is spread across four storeys and houses a new Asia-Pacific (APAC) headquarters – including an innovation lab, a training facility and a consultation centre for customers with “serious” skin concerns.

Launched on Tues (Jan 15), the spanking new office at Cecil Street is also home to Shiseido’s Travel Retail headquarters and acts as its Singapore office.

At the opening ceremony, Shiseido’s APAC president & CEO Jean-Philippe Charrier said the move was part of the company’s Vision 2020 corporate transformation plans.

According to its website, Vision 2020 encompasses the 147-year-old firm’s six-year plans “to remain vital for the next 100 years”.

Charrier said the decision to move Shiseido’s regional headquarters from Tokyo to Singapore was made in 2015.

“For a Japanese company, taking this step of moving to Singapore takes a lot of courage,” he said.

There are currently over 250 employees from 17 countries working at Shiseido’s new hub, and the company plans to hire an additional 130 people by 2020.

Business Insider took a tour of the sprawling facility at the launch event, and discovered that unlike conventional Japanese office spaces, the new workplace was welcoming, people-centred and placed huge emphasis on comfort, collaboration and innovation.

Here’s a look inside:


The entrance to Shiseido’s new office in Singapore is brightly lit, thanks to a multitude of small-sized ceiling lights as well as floor-to-ceiling windows behind the translucent wall at the reception counter.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Camellia and chrysanthemum flowers feature strongly in the office reception, which is located on level 18 of Frasers Tower in the CBD.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

The artistic flower display requires some maintenance and the space could be changed to feature other works in future.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Next to the reception area, there are seats offering panoramic views for staff or visitors having a coffee break.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

A pantry area located nearby gives employees the chance to grab a bite.

This area is also surrounded by meeting rooms which are well-lit by natural sunlight.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

There are tea and coffee facilities available in the pantry area.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

The walls on level 18 feature Shiseido products which are currently being marketed. These are refreshed around three times a year.

Some of the other brands Shiseido carries include Nars, Laura Mercier and Dolce & Gabbana.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

At level 20, you’ll find the Asia Learning Centre, where Shiseido will train its employees from around the region.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

This is a first-of-its-kind for the entire Shiseido group, and there is a possibility that it will be replicated at the company’s other hubs around the world.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

There are several discussion and meeting areas at the learning centre. Some offer semi-privacy with sheer curtains.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Imagine learning about your job in a room like this.

Shiseido’s classrooms offer the same stunning views as its meeting rooms, so training becomes something employees can look forward to.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

A little library area in the learning centre will offer access to books and reading stations.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

It is here that employees can also choose to work in solitude, inside work stations hidden behind opaque curtains.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Shiseido’s APAC Innovation Centre is also located at the office hub.

The brand conducts Asia Pacific consumer research here to develop local adaptions of its products suitable for skin types more commonly seen in the region.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

At the entrance of the centre, you will find an informative chart showing the major milestones of Shiseido’s research and development in the past 100 years.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Part of the centre’s research facilities includes an area where Shiseido’s researchers can conduct focus group discussions and studies with consumers.

For example, a consumer may be asked to go through an entire skincare routine so researchers can learn more about the different ways customers care for their skin.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

There is also state-of-the-art machinery to help researchers look into the condition of the participant’s skin.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

This lab situated in the centre is equipped with testing equipment. Here, Shiseido products are put through rigorous testing in areas such as leakage prevention and temperature or climate tolerance.

There are even machines to measure how much force is required to open a bottle, lipstick or any Shiseido product.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

With the opening of its APAC headquarters, Shiseido is also bringing in its Life Quality Beauty Centre – where eligible customers can seek help for more serious skin concerns such as burn scars and side effects caused by cancer treatment.

To be opened in Q2, this will be the first Life Quality Beauty Centre in Southeast Asia and the fifth in the world.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

Instead of the regular line of products, the centre offers specially formulated makeup with heavier coverage.

Like the original centre in Ginza, Shiseido plans for its Singapore Life Quality Beauty Centre to be linked to special groups and dermatologists who have patients that are looking for a cover-up solution to their skin problems.

According to a spokesperson, appointments with consultants at the centre are by referral only, and the makeover/how-to session will be provided free-of-charge.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin

This line is also water-resistant so wearers don’t have to worry about exercising or wet weather. The makeup range, which will be available for public sale, is also safe for young children.

Fun fact: Shiseido first developed special foundation in 1956 to help people with serious burn scars after the war.

Business Insider / Jessica Lin