Bethany Biron:

L’Oréal announced today that it acquired the augmented reality platform ModiFace, becoming the first technology company purchased by the global beauty conglomerate and serving as a testament to the rapid growth of AR within the industry.
 Lubomira Rochet, chief digital officer of L’Oréal, said the acquisition marks the next phase of L’Oréal’s digital growth plan, with a focus on investing in research and development after concluding a recent overhaul of its e-commerce and marketing strategies. Though L’Oréal has partnered with large technology companies in the past such as Google and Alibaba, the acquisition will bring ModiFace in-house and give the company a significant edge over its competitors. Since it was founded in 2001, ModiFace has worked closely with L’Oréal, as well as brands like Covergirl, Sephora and Ulta on a variety of mobile app and in-store activations.
 “We believe brands, products and services will come together to create a store of the future using technology such as AR, artificial intelligence and conversational commerce,” she said. “This is why, for us, this is a natural step to acquire ModiFace. By doing so, we create an internal R&D capability for digital services.”