Orly has an independent streak — and is ready to show it off.
While its nail polish competitors OPI and Essie were busy being bought by Coty Inc. and L’Oréal USA Inc., respectively, Orly remained on the acquisition sidelines and turned its attention inward, investing in a major rebranding initiative to strengthen its position in the professional nail market. Orly founder Jeff Pink is confident the rebranding, which introduces a comprehensive new look for the brand for the first time in its more than three-decade history, will ignite close to 30 percent growth this year to bring Orly’s revenues to roughly $80 million. “We are very aggressive,” he declared.
It all started in 2009, when Orly’s senior vice president of marketing, Carina Breda, previously director of marketing at Wella, came on board and informed Pink his brand should undergo a serious examination. “I am very research driven. I believe in data. When Jeff hired me, he hired me for that reason. He prides himself on being an entrepreneur and very creative. I was pretty scared because I thought that for 30 years he worked without me, without research and number crunching,” said Breda. “It can be a dangerous thing for an owner, but I’m very proud of him. He said he wanted to go that route. He wanted to know who we are and what the competition is.”
Pink plunked down around $120,000 to learn what nail-product consumers, professionals and distributors thought of Orly. After workshops and focus groups, German market research firm Sturm und Drang concluded that consumers thought Orly was “approachable, like your best friend, someone who is your confidant,” explained Breda. Those qualities were terrific, she continued, but Orly also wanted to be considered a nail color authority. “Our goal is to definitely come across as more sophisticated, more modern and contemporary,” said Breda.
Orly’s “O” logo and its cap were getting in the way of the messages it wanted to communicate. In the years after Orly’s launch in 1975, the letter “O” had become ubiquitous in corporate branding, used by everyone from Oprah to Overstock, and Breda lamented, “It’s not modern enough.” Orly’s patented gripper cap was practical — the rubber material makes bottles easy to open — but its gray color didn’t provide a great contrast with the nail polish shades Orly sells.
Orly has excised the “O,” and its logo is simply the brand name in sharp capital letters. Gone as well is the gray dimpled cap. A black cap with grooves is in its place. Wording on packaging and displays communicates clearly what products are and what they do, but extraneous verbiage has been eliminated. Product displays have been redesigned from harsh, industrial iron, which Breda described as too severe and masculine, to acrylic and white modular units. “We decided that we wanted open, white space. We decided less is more,” said Breda.
Pink wasn’t sentimental about the look Orly has left behind. “When you are running a company and you have business, you do something when you feel it. The guts tell you that. That’s what happened here. We used a lot of sophisticated techniques, but at the end of the day, you look at what you feel strongly about,” he said. “We went through a lot of revisions, and we strongly believe that with this new logo, this new black cap and packaging, we are going to gain huge market share.”
Pink noted that Orly’s market share currently ranks second in the professional nail market, behind OPI but ahead of Essie and CND. Nail treatment products, where Orly established itself early on with breakthrough products such as the primer base coat Ridge Filler and the rubberized base coat Bonder, account for 25 percent of Orly’s sales, with the remainder from polishes. In the last four years, Orly’s average growth rate has been in the 20 to 30 percent per year range, according to Pink. To help match or exceed that growth rate this year, Orly is projected to spend $2 million on raising awareness of its rebranded products with consumer advertising, which it hasn’t done since the Nineties.
Orly’s growth — and the growth of the nail category more generally — has attracted suitors. A few years ago, Pink mentioned L’Oréal showed interest in acquiring Orly. “I said to them, ‘The company is not for sale. It’s my baby. I don’t want to sell my baby,’” he recounted. “They told me clearly that, ‘If you are not going to sell, we are going to go on to the next company.’ I knew what they meant by that. They bought Essie.” Does Pink regret turning down L’Oréal? “Not at all,” he asserted. “That was about four years ago, and my company today is twice as big as it was then. There is more value to my company today than there was ever before, but, still, I’m not going to sell the company. I love what I’m doing.”
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
For men’s fall 2018, @giuseppezanotti drew on elements from streetwear, sport, biker, combat and rock ‘n’ roll. Pictured here are a pair of shoes from the collection, featuring zippers, rhinestones, and silver hardware. Head to WWD.com to see a roundup of the accessories from Milan’s men’s fall 2018 shows. #wwdfashion (📷: Andrea Delb)
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of @ralphlauren’s snowboarding collection, the brand is mining its archives. The iconic brand is reintroducing vintage styles and dropping new designs for a color capsule that will be available in Ralph Lauren stores and @openingceremony on January 25. The capsule will consist of 10 pieces, including the Snow Beach Pullover, pictured here, which is a collector’s item that rapper Raekwon wore in Wu-Tang Clan’s “Can It Be All So Simple” video. #wwdfashion (📷: Tom Gould)
For @rochasofficial’s pre-fall 2018 collection, creative director Alessandro Dell’Acqua channeled the sophisticated and intriguing Catherine Denevue in the film “Belle de Jour.” Polished collarless coats, midi skirts, suits and ’60s graphic motifs were all featured in the collection, adding a sense of discreet luxury. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion
“We tried to produce clothing of that couture quality, but the most daunting part was that we only had a matter of days [to do it],” said costume designer Lou Eyrich, who recreated Gianni Versace’s iconic looks for @americancrimestoryfx. Eyrich searched online retailers and vintage shops for original pieces from the design house and for @penelopecruzoficial, who plays Donatella Versace. Head to WWD.com to read how she created the Versace world. #wwdfashion
Only three months after her stellar debut catwalk season, @kaiagerber has inked her first big design collaboration –– with @karllagerfeld. The collection blends Lagerfeld’s Parisian chic aesthetic and the model’s signature West Coast casual style via RTW, accessories, footwear and more. The #KarlLagerfeldxKaia collection will launch in September with a series of events. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews