A. Lee Graham email@example.com
Beauty may be only skin deep, but it’s big business for Galderma Laboratories LP. With more than $2 billion in worldwide sales, the Fort Worth-based company has savored success since forming in 1981 as the North American operation of Swiss firm Galderma Pharma. But the company measures success not with dollars, but with the dermatological relief it provides countless individuals young and old. “If you take a second to look at your skin, you might forget one thing: it’s the only visible organ in the body,” said Francois Fournier, company president. Speaking at the June 6 Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce’s Leaders in Business luncheon at the Cendera Center, Fournier emphasized his company’s commitment to innovating solutions to soothing sensitive skin. “As a pharmaceutical company, it’s all about the patient,” said Fournier, whose North Freeway headquarters is a distribution hub for 40 products. Among those is Cetaphil, an oil control foam wash targeting acne-prone skin. With 60 million people nationwide suffering from acne, according to Galderma research, demand for such products is strong. And with 16 million suffering from rosacea, and many more people grappling with other skin conditions, the market for such products appears strong. That’s where the company’s Fort Worth facilities come in. With a 70,000-square-foot distribution center, the site helps provide dermatological needs for a growing customer base. About 250 employees work at the Fort Worth campus, with U.S. employees totaling 600 and 4,200 worldwide. Looking not to its Swiss motherland, but to its adopted Texas home, the company has hired employees educated at Texas Christian University, the University of Texas at Arlington and Southern Methodist University, among other area schools, in building its local workforce. “What we do in the Metroplex is much bigger than in many European countries in terms of volume and sales,” Fournier said. “It’s essential to our strategy, to our commitment to dermatology, that we partner with people across the Metroplex. That’s really key.” What Fournier called Texas values – hard work, local pride – have influenced his company, he said. It spends $400 million each year on research and development, ensuring that products distributed from Fort Worth have a worldwide impact. “We are also proud of investing as much as we can in local activities,” Fournier said. Last August, the company pledged $450,000 to help support the dermatology residency program at Baylor Medical Center at Dallas. Launched by the company’s initial gift of $450,000 in 2009, the Baylor residency program began by providing its first two residents with funding for the three-year program. Whether the purple spout topping some Cetaphil bottles is a nod to Texas Christian University or a packaging afterthought, the company has affirmed its place on Fort Worth’s corporate landscape. “We are rooted in Texas,” Fournier said. More information is available at www.galdermausa.com.