PRESIDENT, LATIN AMERICAN REGION
Date Joined Mary Kay:
March 1, 1994
As President of the Latin America Region (LATAM) for Mary Kay Inc., one of the largest direct sellers of skin care and color cosmetics in the world, Jose (Pepe) Smeke oversees operations for six Mary Kay markets: Argentina, Colombia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay.
Pepe joined Mary Kay Mexico in 1994 as a Manager in the Sales Development group. He quickly achieved success, earning the titles of Sales Director and General Manager of Mary Kay Mexico. Pepe was promoted to President of Mary Kay Mexico in 1999, and in 2000, he was named President, Mexico and Latin America Region. Pepe possesses an approachable leadership style and is known for his business hunch and taking calculated risks, which have proven to be crucial in the success of Mary Kay LATAM growth.
During his nearly 30-year tenure with the iconic beauty company, Mary Kay LATAM has experienced extraordinary growth. With operations in more than 35 countries worldwide, the global cosmetics powerhouse expanded its Latin American presence with the opening of two new markets: Mary Kay Colombia in 2015 and Mary Kay Peru in 2017. Under Pepe’s leadership, the Mary Kay brand has not only been elevated in the region but also attracts a younger generation of Independent Beauty Consultants and Mary Kay brand lovers. With an understanding of the needs and preferences of the region, Pepe spearheaded the development of specific product lines in the color cosmetics and fragrance categories, which have been instrumental in the rapid growth and adoption of the Mary Kay brand in LATAM.
Pepe has successfully steered the company’s Latin American growth while also overseeing two of the company’s top five global markets: Brazil and Mexico. The Latin American region has also received numerous awards, and brand awareness in the Latin American region is one of the highest within Mary Kay’s international markets. Working with fashion designers and key influencers, Pepe and his team have secured Mary Kay’s status as an “it” brand with an “it” opportunity.
Prior to joining Mary Kay, Pepe held numerous positions within the sales industry and is fluent in English and Spanish. Pepe earned a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from Universidad La Salle in Mexico City.
FAVORITE MARY KAY QUOTE:
“You cannot teach what you don’t know and you cannot lead where you won’t go.”