Sweet smell of success ... new £1m centre for perfumery

The new state-of-the-art premises
The new state-of-the-art premises

The company which created Anita Roddick’s first Body Shop perfumes has opened a new state-of-the-art factory, after a blaze gutted its former base.

Quintessence Fragrances’ new creation centre in the Hawthorn Industrial Estate, Newhaven was unveiled last week.

The million pound investment follows a devastating fire in 2013 which was started by a fault in a forklift truck.

Managing Director and Chief perfumer, Francois Robert, said: “The fire closed the company for many months and we are extremely lucky to have survived at all, most companies never make it through such a disaster.

“However we have great backers from India who believe in our business, and the people in it, so we have rebuilt the business through this amazing investment and now employ 50 people here in Newhaven.”

Bharat Kamte, the Indian owner, flew in for the opening of the new factory.

He said: “This is a very special day for Quintessence, the people we employ, and our wonderful customers who continued to support us while we rebuilt the business.

“This is a big investment, and is an indication of our belief in the future of business here in the UK

Quintessence has become one of the UK’s leading fragrance houses.”

Recent success, with nominations at the FIFI awards (the fragrance Oscars) include a fragrance created for the Covent Garden cosmetic fashionista, Charlotte Tilbury.

With Kate Moss as a fan, the fragrance has captivated the market.

Francois Robert, whose father developed classic fragrances for Channel, Dior and Rochas, leads an Anglo/French creative team at the Newhaven base, to make perfumes that go into our everyday products, as well as exporting throughout Europe and the Middle East.