Backing INSKIN COSMEDICS as it opens new doors in the skincare market

When teenage Maria Enna-Cocciolone first came across beauty therapy during a lucky encounter at a careers fair, she knew she had found her calling. Immediately, she recognised the industry’s transformative potential in boosting self-confidence and impacting lives.

‘No matter their age or life stage, when people feel confident in their skin, they have a different attitude and strength towards life – they tend to be more confident and positive,’ she explained. 

Now, with nearly four decades of skincare experience under her belt, Maria is the founder and CEO of Australia’s largest vertically-integrated professional skincare company, INSKIN COSMEDICS. The skincare manufacturer, distributer and retailer distributes its own brands and third-party products to thousands of skincare clinics across Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

After sixteen years of success, INSKIN COSMEDICS is embarking on a new venture, with ambitious plans to grow and expand, and has teamed up with the Australian Business Growth Fund to help pave the way.

Offering the market something unique

The skincare and beauty sector has always marched to its own beat. It has defied market trends and performed strongly, even during uncertain economic times. It’s a lucrative sector – but the market is crowded.

Enter INSKIN COSMEDICS. Born as a skincare importer and distributor in Sydney’s Five Dock in 2007, Maria Enna-Cocciolone wanted to create something special in the skincare industry.

‘In my experience, even during tough times, people prioritise products that elevate how they look and feel about themselves. At INSKIN COSMEDICS, we wanted to offer consumers something that made their lives better, that wasn’t already in the market. We had to forge our own path,’ said Maria.

Introducing ‘cosmedical’ skincare

So, INSKIN COSMEDICS invented something new: a new category – ‘cosmedical’ skincare. Through its leading brand, O COSMEDICS, the team formulated products using functional active ingredients at high doses to combat ageing, correct serious skin conditions and maintain skin health. This fills the market gap between lower-strength ‘cosmeceuticals’ and ‘medical-grade prescription-only’ skincare products. ‘We wanted to offer a product that goes beyond smell and texture – our product had to have substance, and make a tangible and visible change to people’s skin,’ Maria said.

In the years that followed, INSKIN COSMEDICS created a second brand, GINGER&ME, which addresses the impact of modern skin concerns like stress and inflammaging (a chronic inflammatory skin concern) – while also introducing mindfulness to the skincare world. INSKIN COSMEDICS is also the exclusive Australian distributor for several international, well-renowned cosmetic devices and products, including Dermapen.

With its own product development and manufacturing facility based in Sydney, INSKIN COSMEDICS can do what most other skincare providers can’t – fast track product development. Its vertically integrated model enables it to respond directly to customers’ needs and leverage the latest skincare technologies and market trends, without extended lead times.

Connecting people and products

INSKIN COSMEDICS products are distributed through professional skincare clinics via certified and experienced skin experts.

Thanks to specialised training supplied by INSKIN COSMEDICS, skincare specialists ensure customers are treated with the most suitable skincare solutions, both in a clinic and at home.

This approach has earned INSKIN COSMEDICS the loyalty of thousands of skincare clinics across Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

However, for INSKIN COSMEDICS, there’s more to do, and greater opportunities to unlock – and the team looked for a partner to support them.

Photo: Ghazaleh Lyari (ABGF Co-head of Investments) with Maria Enna-Cocciolone (CEO of INSKIN).

Forming a new relationship and path ahead

With INSKIN COSMEDICS’s success in Australia and certain overseas markets, the team decided to consider expanding into additional global markets. They needed a partner who could connect them to overseas markets, to help them organise their thinking, evaluate opportunities, and support the business in executing their plans for expansion.

INSKIN COSMEDICS is a family business – with Maria’s husband, daughter, son and other family members actively involved in the team. Hence during the search for a new partner, it was critical that there be a right cultural fit – one who shared their values.

According to Maria: ‘We met numerous potential investment partners, but from our very first meeting, ABGF felt different. They took the time to understand our story, our point of difference and our vision. I instantly felt a connection.’

ABGF’s investment into INSKIN COSMEDICS was led by Co-Head of Investments, Ghazaleh Lyari.

‘INSKIN COSMEDICS’s specialised products, vertically integrated model and impressive distribution network bring something unique to the skincare market – which their loyal clinics, technicians and customers all attest to. I am looking forward to supporting Maria and her team as they continue to go from strength to strength,’ Ghazaleh said.

ABGF’s minority investment will be used to support the business as it continues to grow. ABGF will take a seat on INSKIN COSMEDICS’s board and be an active investor and strategic growth partner. Through its global network, ABGF will also help INSKIN COSMEDICS prepare for its launch in broader international markets.

Maria concluded: ‘With ABGF only taking a minority stake in our business, we don’t have to change who we are or give up control in order to work together. And now I have a female-led team to partner with – I feel confident we will continue to grow with next level heart, passion and market share.’

Ghazaleh agreed. ‘Personally, it has been delightful to get to know Maria, the first female founder in our investment portfolio, as well as the broader INSKIN COSMEDICS team. ABGF is committed to diversity, as it enables our teams to mirror the demographics of the businesses we invest in, such as INSKIN COSMEDICS, and spot opportunities in the market that may otherwise go unnoticed. We are very proud to be partnering with INSKIN COSMEDICS, and look forward to forging new paths together,’ she said.

Photo: Ghazaleh Lyari (ABGF Co-head of Investments) with the Cocciolone family: Mario, Maria, Cassandra and Alex.

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