NEW YORK — Nicky Kinnaird, a queen of the British niche beauty retailers, has gained a foothold in the U.S. in June and now plans to open three more Space NK boutiques in the Tristate area.
During a recent interview here, Kinnaird said she plans on opening freestanding stores in the Short Hills Mall in New Jersey, perhaps by Oct. 24; another on Columbus Avenue, between 69th and 70th Streets, on New York's Upper West Side in mid-November, and a third at 24 Harwood Court in downtown Scarsdale, N.Y., at the end of November. Of the three new stores, the Columbus Avenue unit will measure 1,000 square feet, while the other two will be 1,500 square feet each.
Space NK opened its first U.S. store at 99 Greene Street in New York's SoHo neighborhood on June 14, and its look undoubtedly will be echoed through new stores being added.
"SoHo has been really good," Kinnaird said, without mentioning specific numbers. "People are recognizing that we are offering a real difference." On the chain's home turf in the U.K., there are nearly 60 Space NK stores operating, up from 46 units a year ago. According to estimates by industry sources, some of the British stores boast a sales productivity approaching $2,000 per square foot.
The Greene Street store contains a total of 3,000 square feet, with slightly less than 2,000 square feet devoted to selling space. Kinnaird said the store's bestsellers are Eve Lom and Space NK signature products as well as some of the organic treatment lines that the store carries on an exclusive basis. The store also has two treatment rooms, which are expected to go into operation soon and offer Eve Lom facials.
She noted that the store is drawing from a considerable expatriate population in SoHo, a large tourist stream and a lot of Americans who regularly travel. "A lot of people are discovering Space NK for the first time," she said.
The Space NK approach involves providing an intimate boutique ambience with a highly specialized, tightly edited assortment aimed at providing problem-solving products. Some Space NK units measure a mere 500 square feet.The key is customer service. Kinnaird stressed in a previous interview that all the sales staff is trained with six weeks of schooling across all the brands. In the U.K., a typical store will have five to 18 salespeople on the selling floor at any time, Kinnaird said.
In terms of diversification, Space NK opened a new flagship with a spa in the Knightsbridge section of London at 40 Hans Crescent. The first spa location was opened in Notting Hill in 1999. Space NK also opened a men's store in London's Soho section in 2005.
Kinnaird's strategy in competing with larger competitors, like Sephora, is not only to provide service in an intimate setting, but also to offer a highly edited selection of prestige brands, many of them exclusives from Europe. In the previous interview, Kinnaird estimated that the average Space NK store carries 50 to 60 brands, with more than 40 percent of sales generated by skin care, 30 percent by color cosmetics, 10 percent by hair and fragrance and the remaining 20 percent by the Space NK house brand.
Kinnaird recently has been in the process of adding some new brands to the assortment: Jurlique, an organically produced line from Australia; INA Crystals from the London-based Inner Nutritional Alchemy Crystals Ltd., a treatment line based on crystal salts and other natural ingredients; Joshi Holistic Skin Care, also from London, where the company operates a metabolic detox fitness clinic, and Face Boutique, a nine-stockkeeping unit skin and hair care line aimed at young consumers in their mid-20s. When INA makes its debut, the brand will trumpet its White Gold Detoxifying Crystal Salts, a product designed to detoxify the skin.
The infrastructure for Kinnaird's budding foray into the U.S. is housed in offices in the Greene Street store, where visiting Space NK specialists from the U.K. train local staff. Kinnaird said she is also curious about the Japanese market, but her priorities and focus are squarely centered on the U.S. right now. Kinnaird said she expects to open six stores a year in America "for the first couple of years."
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty