A Bespoke Fragrance Brand Establishes Global Presence Without Opening Stores Abroad

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For start-ups and small firms, going global is no easy feat. Maison 21G, a perfume start-up, had a similar experience. This bespoke Singapore-based fragrance house gained global acclaim, while also providing consumers with a delivery experience that reflected the brand's philosophy.

After the brand was spotted by a popular Korean influencer, who placed an order for an exploratory set of 34 miniature perfumes, the founder and CEO Miss Johanna Monange understood that time was ticking. This is because products are delivered very fast in South Korea, so Koreans have high expectations as well. She further added that “When you work with celebrities and influencers, there are many requests and speed is necessary – they are used to having super service quality.”

Packing the delicate glass vials securely as well as filling out sophisticated documentation takes at least half an hour for every order received at Maison 21G. And due to their nature of flammability, perfumes are classified as dangerous products for shipping.

That wasn't a concern for Miss Monange, though; with DHL Express as Maison 21G's logistics partner, she was confident that the order would arrive on time. The delivery timelines amazed her!

To quote Miss Johanna Monange, “DHL Express parcels can get to the United States and Europe in around three days, and to Hong Kong in 48 hours. That level of speed really defines luxury to me — especially in combination with their fantastic tracking system. For any luxury lifestyle brand, good delivery has become part of the product. You need it to have customer satisfaction.”


As a start-up, the team’s primary focus was to further develop and expand the company. The brand today has three locations in Singapore, including its flagship boutique at Marina Bay Sands. On top of that, its website caters to a global audience with a huge number of online customers from the Middle East. As a result, the company was contacted by numerous distributors in the region. Today, “people know us in all these countries – we are in discussions with distributors in Dubai, Qatar and Saudi Arabia,” said Miss Monange.

By reaching out to a worldwide audience, the company was able to grow its footprint without having to open stores in other countries. Besides, aerosol-based perfumes are considered harmful items from a logistics standpoint, which few people realize. They often contain flammable solvents, which can pose a safety threat if not handled appropriately, especially when transported by air.

This is where DHL Express’ expertise in handling dangerous goods came in handy. DHL encouraged Maison 21G's logistics director and other workers to take a Dangerous Goods Handling course so that the perfumes could be packaged securely without compromising luxury or speed. In addition, DHL also frequently audits Maison 21G's warehouse to help with packaging and document preparation to guarantee that all deliveries go smoothly.

As stated by Miss Monange, “DHL Express has become such an important partner for us because it allows us to reach the world in a very safe and luxurious way, which matches our bespoke, personalised approach.” 


Maison 21G and its customers have profited a lot by putting their trust in DHL Express's team to handle customs and international border rules. As a result, customers no longer have to worry about sorting out paperwork in order to get their perfumes. This is because DHL Express has strong ties with customs authorities across the world. “That’s the benefit of working with a large industry player. If customers want to return something – our brand offers returns and exchanges even on bespoke scents – DHL will manage the returns and also assist in reshipping a new perfume to the person” says Miss Monange.

Such seamless customer service exemplifies luxury for Miss Monange. She feels that good customer relationships can be built when individuals feel regarded as human beings rather than customers dealing with chatbots. This is where DHL Express's services help to improve the overall experience.

She further added, “We used to talk about the last mile of delivery, but now it’s really about the last 10,000 miles because luxury brands are all about global reach. Maison 21G is a small company, but now we can reach anyone in the world. It’s beautiful to be able to do that today despite all the challenges of shipping our products so that we can make our customers happy. We are a Singaporean brand, but now we have become a worldwide brand thanks to our partnership with DHL.”

Know more about how you can increase your company’s global reach with DHL Express.