Pet Business: Andis is well known among professional groomers, but what is happening in the retail grooming market? Are people grooming their pets themselves? Is there a strong market for at-home grooming products?
Karen Formico: Pets are viewed more and more as members of the family and treated as such. As sources of companionship and unconditional love, people are spending time and money on providing quality care for their dogs’ and cats’ wellbeing. While many do have their pets professionally groomed, the at-home grooming market is growing, as it is a way to maintain the professional cut and stretch the time between visits.
At-home grooming also strengthens the bond between owner and pet and provides the opportunity to inspect pets for changes on their skin or body. Daily brushing, even on short-hair breeds, is essential to remove loose hair, maintain the coat and keep skin from pulling due to tangles or matts.
The past few years, the surge of do-it-yourself and YouTube tutorials has strengthened the at-home grooming market.
PB: What are the latest innovations in this category? What are Andis’ latest introductions into the market?
Formico: Grooming tools are becoming more sophisticated, with tools that are specifically designed for the needs of individual breeds. Handles with soft grips and ergonomic design reduce irritation and fatigue. Andis recently introduced the pocket-sized Trim’N Go, a battery-run trimmer designed to fit comfortably in the palm of the hand. This portable trimmer is perfect for removing small tangles or burrs caught in fur, and since it is battery operated, it can be easily carried along on a walk or outing. The small size can easily trim around the eyes on longer haired breeds.
PB: What trends and/or consumer demands are driving technological and design developments in this category?
Formico: Some pet owners see their pets as an extension of themselves. Consumers are demanding ergonomic, professional-grade tools with some personalized flair. Since pets are viewed as members of the family, many are willing to pay to ensure their pet gets quality, reliable products.
Our Pulse Ion Adjustable Blade Cordless Clipper is developed for professionals, but we see many dog enthusiasts, usually with multiples, purchase it for personal use. The Pulse Ion is durable, has consistent power for up to two hours, and the cordless feature makes it useful anytime and anywhere. Due to many requests for color options, the Pulse Ion is available in pink, blue and purple.
PB: What sets Andis and its products apart in the market?
Formico: Andis works with world-renowned, award-winning professional groomers, who provide continual guidance and input into the design of our clippers, trimmers and grooming tools. It is with this input that we are able to continually look for ways to upgrade and improve our products to ensure the best possible grooming experience for consumers and their pets. Consumers may also connect with our grooming experts via our website to help solve grooming issues.
PB: What does the future hold for this category of products?
Formico: The category is growing, as grooming is more than just the fur, it includes nails and teeth too. Grooming is essential to the overall health and wellbeing of pets. Personalization will play a key role in product development as the humanization of the family pet will only continue to grow and with it, additional products to support a market eager for new ideas and innovative products. Everything from fur dyes to hair accessories, jewelry to nail polish, toothpaste and custom shampoos. Also expect high-end luxury offerings.