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."
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews