HatchBeauty Brands on Building a Rapid Response Playbook


Founded in 2009, HatchBeauty Brands has spent over a decade working closely with retailers to build products that meet consumers' needs. One of the original brand incubators and the first to offer both beauty and wellness under one roof, HatchBeauty is known for bringing retailers into the laboratory to co-create brands. From Orlando Pita Play to NatureWell Coconut Oil Moisturizing Cream, some of HatchBeauty's greatest success stories have emerged from these types of collaborative endeavors.

So how does a company that prides itself on long-game partnerships respond quickly amid an unprecedented pandemic? Preston Bottomy, HatchBeauty Brand's president, explains.

“When managing through this crisis, we looked first to our retail partners to understand their critical needs, a reaction that's ingrained in our DNA and provides a fast way to reach the end customer. As states were rolling out country-wide shutdowns, and consumers rushed to still-open stores to stock-up, we all observed the consumer mindset shifting. Self-care began to take a backseat to necessity, as the toilet paper shelves laid empty and quarrels erupted in aisles over bleach. 

“Throughout HatchBeauty's history, both soap and hand sanitizers have had important roles of varying degree in our year-to-year business. As we saw wholesale orders for our soap increase in mid-March, we contacted our retail partners to find out what they most needed. Severe shortages of both products required desperate attention, and by late March we had crafted a playbook to deliver on those needs using our NatureWell brand.

“We formed a cross-functional swat-team to phone manufacturers and locate components, label suppliers, and potential fill partners. We scoped different solutions for each partner, depending on channel and customer profile, and quickly matched orders to production. The effort was made possible by strong retailer relationships, agile and trusted contract manufacturers, and a deep and seasoned team of product developers under the leadership of chief operations officer, Rick Weisbrod, who brings more than 30 years of product and packaging experience. Speed-to-market has always been a hallmark of Hatch's, and Rick's network and know-how enabled us to respond in our typical faster-than-others fashion. Between mid-March and June 1, 2020, we will have shipped over 3 million units of hand sanitizer and another 1 million units of hand soap above forecast.

While operating to solve immediate needs, our Trend team was furiously working to figure out what the implications would be in the medium to long term. Our Trend Lab, led by Kristi Bergeron, our vice president of brand and integrated marketing, launched a 40-page report titled "Here + Now, Beauty in a Post COVID-19 Economy". This report highlights early trends her team was observing in the market, reading in the news, and seeing in consumer data and outlines their implications going forward. Released in partnership with CEW on April 13th, we have outlined key trends that we believe will define the beauty and wellness industry and provide opportunities for retailers in the months to come. You can download that paper at HatchBeautyBrands.com. 

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