In response to disappointing financial results in 2012, Avon is in the midst of an aggressive turnaround plan to scale back and restructure its business. CEO Sheri McCoy, at the helm for a year and a half, is confident she can pull it off. As others
expand in fast-developing markets (and analysts see promise in direct selling there),
Avon’s makeover will include exiting the Vietnamese, South Korean, and Irish
markets, cutting 1,500 jobs, and curbing spending. It also announced the sale of its Silpada jewelry home party business, which it purchased three years ago, selling it back to the founders at a steep discount. As a result, Avon aims to reach single-digit percentage revenue growth by 2016. As long as McCoy and her leadership team stay true to the brand’s core values and heritage, Avon has the potential to regain its hold
on the global beauty and direct-selling market. Even while in cost-cutting mode,
it’s strategically investing in technology, providing digital tools to its six million representatives worldwide, as well as creating mobile apps and more opportunities for customers and representatives to connect through social media. Although Avon has been suffering financially, consumers still appreciate its values, philanthropic work, and commitment to empowering women. With some investors predicting Avon will disappear completely and others predicting a comeback, the next few years will be a crucial test for the 126-year-old brand.