Cartier Looks to Build Scent Pillar

The target client for Baiser Volé, the brand's new women’s fragrance, is slightly younger than for its other scents.

PARIS — Cartier’s new women’s fragrance Baiser Volé, due out within the next two weeks, is meant to become a pillar in the brand’s scent portfolio.

This story first appeared in the July 8, 2011 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

“The most important objective is for us to speak about the [Cartier house] — to speak about luxury” and savoir faire, said Coralie de Fontenay, managing director world fragrance at Parfums Cartier. She explained another goal with Baiser Volé (or Stolen Kiss, in English) is to have Cartier rank among the world’s top 25 fragrance brands.

De Fontenay called the scent a “very qualitative entry door into the Cartier dream.” Its target client is slightly younger than for the brand’s other women’s fragrances.

For Baiser Volé’s juice, Cartier in-house perfumer Mathilde Laurent created a lily soliflore by imagining what the whole flower — including its leaves, petals and pistil — could smell like.

“There is no lily oil or lily absolute,” said Laurent, who wanted to introduce a floral scent in Cartier’s fragrance collection. “But I didn’t want it to be the 1,001st floral floriental, and I didn’t want to add a new floral composition.”

Instead, Laurent likened wearing Baiser Volé to having on a necklace of lilies.

The fragrance will come out in mid-July exclusively in Nordstrom in the U.S. It will then be rolled out to the rest of the world in September, save for China, where it is to be introduced in January 2012 in about eight department store locations. In all, Baiser Volé will be in some 10,000 doors globally.

“It’s really going to be a key pillar inside our portfolio,” said de Fontenay, adding that Baiser Volé should be to the Cartier women’s fragrance business what bestseller Declaration is to its men’s scent activity. The latter category generates a bit more than 50 percent of Cartier Parfums’ revenues.

Cartier executives would not discuss sales projections, but industry sources estimate Baiser Volé will generate first-year wholesale revenues of 30 million euros, or $43 million at current exchange.

Craig McDean photographed the single- and double-page print visual for the new scent featuring model Tony Garn, and Olivier Trillon took the bottle shot. Baiser Volé’s video ad, which will exist in 20-, 30- and 45-second formats, was lensed by Sean Ellis and is to first break on French and Italian TV.

For the ad campaign, Cartier has earmarked a larger budget than for its former launches, confirmed de Fontenay without divulging numbers.

In France, Baiser Volé’s 30-, 50- and 100-ml. eau de parfum sprays are to retail for 46 euros, 65 euros and 92 euros, or $66, $93.25 and $132, respectively. The 30-ml. extract will be 124 euros, or $177.90, and the line also includes three ancillary products.