Hain Celestial banks on e-commerce

by Monica Watrous
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Online accounts for more than 5 percent of Hain Celestial's US sales.
BOCA RATON, Fla. – The Hain Celestial Group Inc. is poised to capture considerable growth from e-commerce in the coming years, executives said during a Feb. 20 presentation at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York conference in Boca Raton.

Online accounts for more than 5 percent of Hain’s US sales, or roughly $80 million. The company expects that figure to double or triple by 2020, said Julie Bowerman, senior vice president of digital engagement and e-commerce.

Julie Bowerman, senior vice president of digital engagement and e-commerce for Hain Celestial

“Our brands are naturally strong online, and we’ve just recently begun to put our investments behind this,” said Bowerman, who joined the company in October and previously led digital efforts at the Coca-Cola Co. “We’re ambitious to be leaders in this space.”

Millennials and organic shoppers are expected to help drive e-commerce growth, Bowerman said.

“So right now, millennials, they over-index in grocery shopping online 55 percent to 41 percent as an average in the US,” she said. “They’re over-indexing in organic buying; 52 percent of them are organic buyers. And they over-index in eight of our top 11 brands. This kind of combination of effects shows that online against this consumer with the Hain portfolio is an opportunity.”


The heavy organic shopper buys 25 percent more when shopping online, she added, citing “organic” as a top search term.

“But this is not just an Amazon phenomenon,” Bowerman said. “This is across every one of the retailers that I’ve talked to since I’ve been at Hain. They consistently say organic is what their consumers and shoppers are shopping for when they come to their platform.”

To accelerate growth in e-commerce, Hain Celestial is making strategic investments to create new ways for the online shopper to buy its brands and “dramatically” expanding distribution points across key online retailers, Bowerman said. The company also has created dedicated packaging “that meets the supply chain needs of the online channels” and has built two dedicated fulfillment centers for e-commerce, with a couple more set to open this year, she added.

“We’re adopting an e-commerce first mentality,” she said. 

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