the head avon lady

The New York Times ran an interview last week on Andrea Jung, chairwoman and chief executive of cosmetic company Avon Products: Selling Beauty on a Global Scale. It's not quite the old door-to-door Avon Lady sales model anymore, at least not here in America. Today, more than two-thirds of Avon's sales are outside the United States.

The direct-selling model—where independent sales representatives do not work directly for Avon—apparently makes it easier to break into new markets. About 5.5 million sales representatives now sell Avon products in everywhere from Shanghai to Rio do Janeiro. It's gone worldwide, baby.

The company, which recently reported its third-quarter earning, said the only region where sales fell was North America. By contrast, revenue rose 25 percent in both Latin America and China and 8 percent in Western Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Ms. Jung and Co. seem to know what they're doing.

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