Scott Friedman is ready for his next act.In his six-plus years as chief executive officer of NYX Professional Makeup, Friedman helped fatten up the company's sales to exceed an estimated $100 million a year. L’Oréal scooped up the makeup artistry brand, founded by Toni Ko in 1999, three years ago.After spearheading expansion of NYX into retailers such as Walgreens Boots Alliance and Macy’s, Friedman left his post in August. But the lure of building another company (after a month of global travel) encouraged Friedman to accept the ceo role at Bellami, a hair extension brand. “It doesn’t feel like work,” said Friedman of his new role. “I decided I wanted to do something that is fun and exciting.”He has a blueprint for growth for Bellami. The brand had estimated sales of $30 million last year, and Friedman sees the potential to build that to more than $1 billion within four or five years. Among the plans are a new headquarters set to open in El Segundo, Calif., next spring and the goal to expand the staff to gear up for growth.Here, Friedman discusses his vision.WWD: Were you familiar with Bellami?Scott Friedman: I had been introduced to the owners [Julius Salerno and Nikki Eslami, who founded the company when they found a lack of quality extensions in the market] a couple of years ago. They are both so talented and we communicate well together, our skill sets are complementary.WWD: What are your growth plans?S.F.: I see a tremendous opportunity because Bellami has a good position in a growing market. The company is already the most well-known, direct-to-consumer clip-in extension brand. And we recently launched our professional hair extension products. We will help salons grow a new category, become more well-known online and give them a brand that consumers are looking for with plans to be number one in salons.My focus is on the brand and what we can do to position the brand with our consumers. We’re going to use digital in all aspects of our business — we’ll use our insights to leverage online conversations and use digital to educate our partners. We are already the most talked-about hair extension brand online.The category of human hair is an expensive category. By going direct to consumers and stylists, all of our costs go into the products — so having conversations about the qualities of our products is important. We’ve also had great success on QVC, we are the first human hair extension brand to have that level of success on the channel.We see opportunities to add other products that complement hair extensions, such as tools suited to styling hair extensions like blow dryers or curling irons.WWD: Who is the audience for hair extensions and why is it expanding at a double-digit clip?S.F.: It is growing because so many women are happy to let people know they have extensions — they don’t hide it. They like to have long hair one day and short the next. It is probably close to a $1 billion business. The interesting thing with human hair is you can wash it and you can color it. It isn’t just young people, women of all ages — especially those with thinning hair — use extensions. It makes people feel good about themselves.WWD: Tell me about the growth of your physical Beauty Bars?S.F.: We just opened our second Beauty Bar in a site in Houston [the first is in Los Angeles]. The Beauty Bars provide extensions and allow women to have them blended in — either clip-in or professionally installed. The 1,500-square-foot locations also serve as distribution points for stylists. Hair extensions are expensive and they can go to the bar to get the colors needed for clients [rather than keeping them in stock].We will open six including one in the Meatpacking District in New York, one in Miami, one in Las Vegas and another in the Los Angeles area. We don’t have a goal of opening many stores. We want to get it right. We’ll hit pause and make sure we’ve locked in the expertise. One is easy. The one in Hollywood is constantly busy. But I know the difference between running one and a larger number.WWD: Will Bellami do more collaborations, such as the recent launch with Dove Cameron?S.F.: We will. The line with Dove is going great. We think this gives a voice to some of the influencers and this is a category that is supplemental with what influencers are already doing — there aren’t 10 other high-end hair extensions we are competing against. We couldn’t believe how much Dove knew about our business. She knew the numbers of the colors and she knew just how many rows she wanted and lengths with her extensions.WWD: Do you see parallels from your career at NYX? Any learnings to apply at Bellami?S.F.: The most important thing is knowing we are going to create a really good team. It is important that you have really bright people and that you empower them. Another thing I’ve learned is that brand strength is everything. Sell-in means nothing. The entire focus is on satisfying the customers. If we give people great products and create value, they will carry the brand message.As we staff up, the kind of people we want to attract in product development are those who can observe cultural trends not only in beauty, but fashion and music as well, to develop innovative products. We can’t be fake.
A first look at @virgilabloh’s sneakers for @louisvuitton. Abloh spoke to WWD about his debut collection for Louis Vuitton, creating @kendalljenner’s #metgala outfit and redefining the heritage brand. Read the full story on WWD.com. #wwdfashion 📷: @alfredo_piola)
The world’s largest producer of denim @iskodenim is sharing the strategy behind its product development process. Read our full interview with ISKO’s product development manager Baris Ozden on the company’s extensive research practices, upcoming denim trends and the latest material innovations on WWD.com. #iskodenim
“I genuinely fell in love with water, I fell in love with Fiji, I fell in love with the whole life that we lived for those few months,” says @mrsamclaflin of filming for his new movie “Adrift” with @shailenewoodley. The 31-year-old actor spoke with WWD about his upcoming projects, meeting Jamie Dornan and working with co-star Woodley. #wwdeye (📷: @jamstoker)
3 years ago, fans of the late singer Aaliyah started calling for a collaboration with @maccosmetics. With the strength of social media — including mock ups of products — 25,000 people signed a Change.org petition for a limited-edition collection, and MAC couldn’t ignore the buzz. Tomorrow, MAC will unveil MAC x Aaliyah, a tribute to the singer who passed away nearly 17 years ago. Head to our stories to preview the new collection, which was worked on by Aaliyah’s family and inspired directly by her makeup bag. #wwdbeauty
Artistic director @clarewaightkeller will be dedicating @givenchyofficial’s fall 2018 couture show in Paris on July 1 to house founder Hubert de Givenchy, who passed away in March at age 91. Givenchy said the collection would be “an homage to his iconic creations, technique, and personal lexicon” and a “celebration of his timeless elegance and grace.” Head to WWD.com to read more. #wwdfashion (📷: Delphine Achard)
La Double J made a name for itself with its vintage-inspired prints, but for resort, designer JJ Martin has ventured into new territory: enter rich jewel toned solids and decadent embellishment, in the form of appliqués, crystals and sequins. #wwdfashion #resort19 #ladoublej
This Just In: J. Crew Group has named Johanna Uurasjarvi as its chief design officer.
Uurasjarvi succeeds Somsack Sikhounmuong, who left the company last September. Tap the link in bio for the full report. #wwdnews
“She came into my hotel room and she was like, ‘I have Chanel and Christian Dior.’ She was like, ‘Chanel likes you.’ And I was like, ‘I’m going to start crying,’” breakout star Maddie Hasson tells WWD of her styling sessions Molly Dickson. “I really like classic, elegant things. I love the way Anna Wintour dresses.” Read more about Hasson’s role in @impulseseries on wwd.com. (📸: @jgreenery ) #wwdeye
@virgilabloh revealed he's working with Australian stylist and
Vogue Australia fashion director @christinecentenera for his debut @louisvuitton men's collection, which will be presented in Paris on June 21. Centenera met Abloh while both working with Kanye West, where she consulted on his all his runway collections since his debut spring 2012 women's wear show. Read the full story on WWD.com. #wwdfashion #wwdnews (📷: @asussmanphoto)