‘Professione Profumo’ - in the Veneto region of Italy, an in-depth course for professionals dedicated to the fragrance sector

2024 . 05 . 30 | written by Chiara Toniello

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Fragrance lovers

Essencional's activity of monitoring the fragrance sector and its trends, could not fail to note the growth over the past two years of training options dedicated to the world of fragrances in Italy. We talked about this very subject at the last edition of Esxence during Essencional’s Observatory workshop (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ie_zt1Y0ib4 from minute 50), which this year delved into the large number of training courses in the fragrance sector, both for enthusiasts and those seeking a post-graduate specialisation, as well as the types of professional opportunities available in Italy.

We decided to take a trip to the north-east, stopping off at the University of Padua, where Prof. Giacomo Boesso, Full Professor of Business Economics, and Sima Masoudi, told us about the experience of ‘Professione Profumo’, the advanced training course dedicated to professionals in the sector. They also gave us a preview of the latest and newest interesting addition to the Padua training offer.

Essencional’s Observatory

‘Prof. Boesso, how did the need for an advanced training course on fragrances come about?’

‘We can say that “Professione Profumo” was born directly from the rib of another course, the Master's degree in “Business and Management (MBM) - Industry specific fragrance and cosmetic sector”, which is a “historic” master's degree at the university, given that it is a course with a twenty-year tradition. The skills acquired and the network of companies developed around this course meant that we were increasingly asked to add to this two-year course intended for recent graduates, a course dedicated to learning for professionals already working in the fragrance sector and who needed to acquire a transversal vision.

And so it was that the course was founded through a collaboration between the Department of Economics and Business and the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences with Mavive, one of Italy's leading perfumery companies with a long tradition in the cosmetics and fragrances sector. The course started in 2021 and this year we are running with the third edition.

‘Who is the course aimed at, is there an ideal participant?’

Since this is a training course for professionals, there is no ideal participant, as there are various and diverse experiences in terms of role and professional skills gained by those who enter the classroom. Certainly the common factor of the course is that it is aimed at professionals already working in the perfumery and cosmetics industry or workers in other sectors with a passion for the world of fragrances and who would like to work in this field. The course provides a generalist preparation with useful skills for people who already work or would like to work in the following professional roles: Formulator, Evaluator, Product Manager, Brand Manager, Sales Manager or aspiring entrepreneurs in the fragrance industry.

Course students

‘What is the training objective?’

‘The training objective is to provide people already working in this field with as generalist an outlook as possible, going beyond the specialised skills of the roles of the people coming to the classroom. The training objective is to give an overall and transversal vision of the fragrance sector and above all to provide students with the necessary elements for the development of management skills that can accompany them on a path of managerial growth.

To do this, we have structured a pedagogic offer divided into two thematic areas, the technical-scientific area and the managerial area. There are ivarious modules that offer in-depth studies on the characteristics and dynamics of the sector, the history of fragrance also in terms of evolutions and trends, and the technical and business aspects related to the world of fragrances, also with reference to the development and planning of sales, through the various distribution channels, including e-commerce and the multichannel/omnichannel purchasing experience.’

‘How are the classes composed?’

‘The classes have an average of 15 students, the audience is varied and mainly composed of people who already work in the industry and want to acquire skills necessary to grow, young start-uppers who want to launch their own project and acquire the skills to do a marketing launch, and employees of companies. Sometimes we also have some enthusiasts as auditors, which shows a strong local interest in the world of fragrances coming from people living in the region.’

‘Dr Masoudi, can you give us some practical information on the organisation of the course?’

‘Certainly! Precisely because of the need to target people who work, the course has a weekend formula, with lessons either in person or online, therefore compatible with work. The duration is about 78 hours over about 5 months, with lessons mainly on Friday afternoons and all-day on Saturdays’. Three sensory analysis weekends are also planned at the laboratories of the Museo del Profumo in Palazzo Mocenigo in Venice, which will give students the opportunity to familiarise themselves with raw materials and fragrance evaluation activities.

Sensory analysis weekend

“What is the feedback from your students?”

The feedback is very positive, both in terms of teaching experience and for the ability of this course to provide opportunities for discussion with professionals and colleagues even after the course has concluded. We have collected a couple of student testimonies:

For me it was an opportunity to delve into broad business aspects which are necessary to understand the market and the various players that compose it. The course was also a precious opportunity to meet and discuss with both professionals and colleagues, which continues to this day."

"Thanks to attending the CAF course I was able to take my first steps in the field of perfumery. I really appreciated the technical-scientific insights that were provided to me but also the basics of economics and marketing which, together, give a clear 360 degree idea of the perfume industry. Overall, for me it was a very positive experience that I would recommend."

Lesson time

Can you give us any previews about the next editions?
‘In addition to the next edition of the Master in Business and management - Industry specific fragrance and cosmetic sector, which will be held next year, we have enriched our training offer this year with a specialisation course in the entrepreneurship week-end formula for students of science subjects, open to students in the three-year or master's degree course in pharmacy, science or biology who wish to deepen their knowledge of business’.

This seems to us to be an excellent programme that will enrich an offer, that of the University of Padua, which is paying attention both to the creation of scientific profiles that can develop managerial skills and that can increasingly have a global training that is aligned to company needs, and to the opportunity to train people who are already working, dealing with business and also cultural aspects of the world of fragrances.
In fact, considering the Italian problem of the mismatch of skills and the importance of continuing education necessary to guarantee professional spendability in a rapidly evolving job market, the University of Padua structured an offer dedicated to the world of fragrances which seemed very interesting and useful for individual professional growth and also as an action to align professional profiles with companies and job market needs.