‘Go-to-market innovation’: Amway delves deep into gut microbiome and digital tech with new Singapore hub

By Hui Ling Dang

- Last updated on GMT

The newly launched Singapore Business Innovation Hub will potentially serve as a springboard for Amway's expansion plans across the region. ©Raffles Quay Asset Management
The newly launched Singapore Business Innovation Hub will potentially serve as a springboard for Amway's expansion plans across the region. ©Raffles Quay Asset Management

Related tags Amway Nutrition Singapore gut microbiome

Amway says it will double down on innovation across the gut microbiome at its newly launched Singapore Business Innovation Hub, which the firm hopes will serve as a springboard for its expansion plans across the region.

This partnership between Amway and the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) aims to bring together scientists and experts across the supply chain to address the evolving needs of regional and global consumers.

“The idea of the Hub is to create more agile cross-functional teams to solve issues faced by consumers much more compellingly beyond a R&D standpoint. We want to create go-to-market innovations that are far more all-encompassing,”​ Asha Gupta, Amway's Regional President, Asia and Chief Strategy & Corporate Development Officer, told NutraIngredients-Asia​.

Amway will be working alongside various local institutions, such as Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and Asian Microbiome Library (AMILI), to leverage their insights and technologies to elevate its entire portfolio.

“We are eager to conduct more research and trials on the gut microbiome, which AMILI is doing great work on. The work of the Hub is to take our scientific innovations and expertise, and translate that into stronghold market experiences,” ​said Gupta.

Through the Hub, Amway will also be expanding its flagship supplement brand Nutrilite’s product lines, particularly those related to gut health such as prebiotics and probiotics.

This is on top of Amway’s existing project in South Korea, where the company has invested in the study of the gut microbiome to enhance its understanding and delivery of personalised nutrition.

“Instead of general vitamins and probiotics, we are able to tweak supplement solutions based on an individual’s needs. Personalisation is in varied stages of development in different countries — some consumers are already seeking hyper-personalised offerings, while some have not reached that stage yet. But this is certainly an area that we are looking to push ahead in the next few years,” ​Gupta added.

Role of the Hub

Beyond supplements, Amway also recently overhauled its beauty brand Artistry Skin Nutrition, with products reformulated with key ingredients like chia seeds. For example, its toners contain prebiotics from white chia seed gel, which helps balance the skin microbiome and reduce inflammation. 

“Nutrilite helps to take care of the inner body, and Artistry of the outer. We have reformulated the products to ensure that they work like supplements for the skin, and produce the quick results that consumers look for,” ​said Gupta.

In addition, Amway will be making use of the Hub’s technologies to boost its sustainability efforts, from farming practices to product packaging. An example is the plan to introduce highly concentrated formulations of its products, which customers can dilute for their own usage. This would lower the consumption of plastic bottles as well as carbon footprint from shipping.

Key areas of growth

Recognising that the pandemic has changed the way people interact, and that more consumers are making health and wellness a priority, Amway’s next steps are heavily focused on ‘community building’ by leveraging new technologies.

“Many people go to fitness classes because they enjoy the sense of community, and they are driven by that. We want to become a partner in their fitness journey by providing that community. Even if people are not meeting physically, they can stay connected via a virtual community,”​ explained Gupta.  

In fact, Amway has adopted the concept of the metaverse and built a virtual riding community in Korea. In this community of close to 50,000 riders, people of any age could create avatars, ride fitness bikes in their own homes, and compete against others virtually.

“During the process, we come in to raise awareness of our products. For instance, the riders are informed that they may be deficient in certain vitamins, and we will then recommend supplements from a relevant range to help them achieve peak performance or higher energy levels,” ​Gupta said.

In the past few years, Amway has grown steadily despite disruptions from the pandemic, with a large portion of its revenue stemming from Asia. The company is set to build on its major markets in Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and Taiwan, while tapping into the ‘huge growth opportunities’ in emerging markets like Vietnam and India.

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