L’Oréal powers its R&D by processing 50 million pieces of data a day

French cosmetics giant, L'Oréal is leveraging big data and artificial intelligence to enable cosmetic development and "power new product innovation".

L’Oréal is using California-based cloud data integration company, Talend, to transform its research and innovation (R&I) department into a value-added service by harnessing its data reservoir to create superior cosmetic products.

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The data lake currently processes 50 million pieces of data per day.

Talend will help to run L’Oréal’s R&I data lake in a private IaaS (Internet as a Service) infrastructure using cloud computing service, Microsoft Azure, to ensure better “quality, efficiency, and safety”.

The data lake currently processes 50 million pieces of data per day.

Science and marketing teams at the cosmetics maker develop “several thousand formulas” every year using digital information L’Oréal stores in the “data lake” – a repository that holds vast amounts of raw data in its native format until needed.

That data, which in L’Oréal’s case relates to the “characterisation and physiochemical definition of formulas and raw materials, and the perceived performance of products by consumers in real conditions and in real-time”, is then uses by R&I to imagine and create innovative products.

L’Oréal said it wanted to centralise or integrate all research data from multiple sources using algorithms to assist scientists.

“Our vision is to deliver services to our businesses that they have not yet considered” 

“In the globalised beauty industry, L’Oréal must innovate ever faster to meet the desires and needs of customers looking for new products and services that respect their bodies and the environment. Our vision is to deliver services to our businesses that they have not yet considered,” said Philippe Benivay, IS experimental data intelligence at L’Oréal.

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The business is looking to harness its data reservoir to create superior cosmetic products.

“Data and AI allow us to move faster to create cosmetic products that meet the infinite diversity of beauty needs and desires of consumers around the world. Talend, in our private cloud environment, helps us transform R&I into a value-added service that can leverage all research data to deliver the best in cosmetic innovation in terms of quality, efficiency, and safety.”

L’Oréal first used Talend in its finance department to manage KPIs (key performance indicators) for research and associated costs, such as tests for certification and qualification.

Since then, it has applied the cloud data practice to other research areas such as toxicology which monitors micro-organisms and the effect of pollution on the skin.

“Research teams must base their analyses and conclusions on trusted data that is accessible in real-time,” said Ciaran Dynes, senior vice president of products at Talend. “L’Oréal’s R&I team uses data and AI not only to help them develop new and increasingly innovative products, but also to inform other departments throughout the company.”

By Rory Butler, Staff Journalist

*Images courtesy of Deposit Photos