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Beauty Beat: Diego Dalla Palma in Makeover Mode … Dougoud Named Guerlain GM … Clarins Maps Expansion Plans

<B>Diego Dalla Palma in Makeover Mode</B><BR><BR>MILAN — Italian cosmetics brand Diego Dalla Palma is continuing to reinvent itself. The cosmetics firm has launched an accessories kit and activated a makeup studio in its flagship store...

Diego Dalla Palma in Makeover Mode

MILAN — Italian cosmetics brand Diego Dalla Palma is continuing to reinvent itself. The cosmetics firm has launched an accessories kit and activated a makeup studio in its flagship store here.

The makeup brush kit — which contains five mini brushes and a mirror in a zip-up white leather case — will be launched in December, and will retail for 45 euros, or $54.90 at current exchange rates, a price point the company hopes will help attract new customers to the 26-year-old brand.

“The kit has been created to be a must-have for both old and new customers,” said Luciana Iannazzo, product manager of Diego Dalla Palma. “It’s finished in Diego Dalla Palma colors of black and white. The brushes are made of light black wood with natural white fibers. It’s a kit we originally thought of as being seasonal but have plans to keep it in the collection.”

Meanwhile, the cosmetics company also inaugurated the official opening of a makeup studio within its store in Milan’s old art district, Brera.

Makeup lessons and makeup applications for special occasions will be held in the two private rooms that are located at the back of the store. Gift certificates for private and group makeup lessons will also be launched in December. Prices start from 60 euros, or $73.15, for individual lessons, and 150 euros, or $182.90, for a mini individual course.

The cosmetics firm’s makeup studio is set to generate an additional 15 percent of the company’s annual turnover, which is expected to hit 20.4 million euros, or $24.9 million, by year-end, according to industry sources. That would represent a 20 percent spike in sales compared with last year. — Stephanie Epiro

Dougoud Named Guerlain GM

NEW YORK — Gilles Dougoud, general manager for Parfums Givenchy’s U.S. business since February 2003, has been appointed general manager for Guerlain as well. Both Parfums Givenchy and Guerlain recently merged into one business group to handle the U.S. market.

Previously, Dougoud led Parfums Givenchy’s U.K. and Ireland affiliate. He joined LVMH in 1994, after 10 years of working in European sales and marketing for Procter & Gamble.

Clarins Maps Expansion Plans

PARIS — Groupe Clarins is planning to open two new stores in the U.S. next year, one on Columbus Avenue in New York and another in Short Hills, N.J., the firm said at a meeting for analysts Friday.

The firm also will focus on fragrance next year and is gearing up to introduce women’s scents for the Clarins brand, Thierry Mugler and Stella Cadente. On Thursday, Clarins announced first-half 2004 net earnings of 28.7 million euros, or $35.2 million at current exchange.

Clarins president and chief executive officer Christian Courtin said at the meeting he preferred to remain “prudent” for the full year and confirmed the group’s forecast of 5 percent sales growth at constant exchange and a flat operating margin at 12.1 percent. The company’s stock closed down 2.75 percent at 53 euros, or $65.12, on the Paris Bourse Friday.

“We are a little disappointed by the first-half trend in net profit and the fact that management has not raised its 2004 guidance,” Antoine Belge, an analyst at HSBC, said in a research note Friday. “Furthermore, the group’s focus on its perfume division in 2005 implies a certain level of risk in terms of earnings evolution. We believe this to be the reason for which the share price is under pressure today.” — Brid Costello