NEW YORK -- After a hiatus of nearly 10 years from fragrance, L'Oreal is banking on a big comeback with a new entry: V by Vanderbilt.
The women's scent, due out in early May, is expected to have a wholesale volume in the U.S. in excess of $30 million by 1995, according to sources.
V will be aimed at active and sophisticated women under 35, who tend to prefer lighter and fresher scents, according to John Wendt, senior vice president and general manager of L'Oreal's Cosmetics and Fragrance Division. He declined to comment on the sales projection.
"We know from research that Vanderbilt is most popular to women 35 and over who like more of a classic floral scent," he said, referring to the company's first Gloria Vanderbilt scent, which was introduced in 1982. Vanderbilt's Glorious, launched in 1985, has been discontinued.
"Since we had not launched a fragrance in so long, it made sense for us to draw on the success of our Vanderbilt license," Wendt added. "We expect that in a very short time V will match Vanderbilt's sales."
According to sources, last year Vanderbilt had a wholesale volume of $35 million in the U.S. At the brand's peak in the mid-Eighties, sales approached $50 million.
L'Oreal will back V with a budget of $7 million to $8 million for print and TV advertising, according to Wendt. The campaigns will break before Mother's Day in May and run for three weeks. They will resume again at Thanksgiving and run through Christmas.
Extensive sampling is also part of the promotional plan. The company will drop 14 million scent seals in publications, as well as distribute three million carded vials in-store.
A sampling of retailers seemed bullish about L'Oreal's return to the category.
"I am very optimistic about V. It looks like it is going to be a winner," said Stephanie Hayter, cosmetics and fragrance buyer for Genovese Drugstores, Melville, N.Y.
"When L'Oreal does a launch, they always know how to do it right," said Sherri Ralston, cosmetics and fragrance buyer for Payless of Wilsonville, Ore.
"I am very excited about the fragrance and the support the company is giving to it," she added.The fragrance, a fresh floral, will be launched in one eau de parfum and four eau de toilette forms. Prices for the five-item line range from $14 for the 0.5-oz. eau de toilette spray to $37 for the 3.4-oz. eau de toilette spray. Prices for V are consistent with Vanderbilt's pricing strategy, Wendt said.
The box is vivid pink and pale green and is emblazoned with a stylized black script V. The eau de toilette bottle is vase-shaped, in clear glass with a pale green cap. The eau de parfum is in a hammered glass bottle with a gold cap.
"V is a really nice fragrance," said Gina Russo, cosmetics and fragrance buyer for The Rx Place in New York, "but I am particularly impressed with the packaging. Both the bottle and the box have a real prestige appeal."
L'Oreal is hoping to avoid the disappointing results shown by Glorious, which actively stayed on the market for about four years. At its peak, Glorious had a wholesale volume estimated at about $20 million, but sales soon fizzled.
"The problem with Glorious is that it really didn't bring in a new Vanderbilt user," said one retailer. "It essentially targeted the same woman who wore Vanderbilt, so there was no point of difference. I think Glorious might be one of the reasons L'Oreal has not launched a fragrance in so long."
But now that the company is back in the fragrance loop, it is planning to stay.
"We are now pleased with the momentum behind our cosmetics and Plenitude, so we are planning to look into other meaningful fragrance launches during the next three to four years," Wendt said, noting that L'Oreal is exploring the possibility of working with other licenses. "We hope to have something new out as early as 1995."
Donatella Versace will receive the International Award at the 2018 @cfda awards, which were announced tonight. Tap link in bio for a list of all the nominees and honorees. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @rahirezvanistudio )
The 2018 @cfda Awards nominees are out! @virgilabloh for @off____white for is nominated for Womenswear Designer of the Year. Tap link in bio for all the nominees. #wwdnews #wwdfashion ( 📷: @simonelezzi)
@chanelofficial is suing high-end vintage retailer @whatgoesaroundnyc for trademark infringement, a move that could cost the retailer millions. The French fashion house claims that it’s not only unintentionally sold counterfeit goods on occasion, but that it’s “gone out of its way to create an association with Chanel,” which does not exist. Read Chanel’s statement on WWD.com #wwdnews (@aitorrosasphoto)
Exclusive: Guillaume Henry has left @ninaricci, the fashion house said on Thursday. “After three years of mutually gratifying creative collaboration, Nina Ricci and Guillaume Henry have together decided that the designer will depart the house after the presentation of the fall-winter 2018-19 collection,” Ricci said in a statement. Get all the details on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
“When Bella enters a room all heads turn,” said @peterphilipsmakeup, creative and image director for @diormakeup. Last night, the two celebrated the product launch of Dior’s Lacquer Plump in Los Angeles with other celebs like @parisjackson, @winnieharlow and more. Head to WWD.com to see the rest of the photos from the night (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
“These shirts are an art form, it’s about getting the message out to as many people as you can. It breaks down the pretentiousness of the art gallery,” says Kumasi Sadiki, cofounder of @ebayontheblock, a store that sells merchandise by New York artists who are shifting their attention to clothes as a wearable medium. Pictured here is a design by artist @joegarvey_, one of the first to spearhead this movement. Head to WWD.com to read @mistywhitesidell full story on how their designs have become merch for the underground elite #wwdfashion
@netaporter is dedicating a part of its website – called the Fine Jewelry and Watch Destination – to highlight its high-end jewelry. The hub will feature products on the site, as well as incorporate styling advice and educational content about high-priced jewelry items. Get more details on WWD.com. #wwdaccessories
For “The Cher Show,” an upcoming musical based on @cher’s life and career, @bobmackie is once again collaborating with the singer in designing the costumes. For decades, Mackie has designed glitzy stage costumes and red carpet looks for the 71-year-old Grammy winner. Pictured here is a sketch of some of the pieces in the wardrobe of the musical, which is set to debut in Chicago on June 12 before making its way to Broadway #wwdeye