Ilana Jivago was flying high in the early Nineties. Her Jivago 24K fragrance, featuring gold leaf pieces suspended in the bottle, eclipsed sales of $100 million.The thriving business hit a roadblock several years later, the victim of counterfeiters knocking off the original and flooding the market with fakes. Like handbags, counterfeiting is a big business in premium fragrances. Upward of $75 million in annual losses are attributed to counterfeit products in the beauty industry, according to estimates.“We were growing nicely and had a strong and developing business in high-end department stores and perfumeries,” recalled Jivago. But then she started hearing reports of retailers getting their hands on her premium fragrance that weren’t in her distribution scope. Some customers complained the fragrance wasn’t lasting. “At first I was so busy running my business I couldn’t pay attention and it was just a trickle.”A keen-eyed border patrol agent in Laredo, Tex., saw a truck loaded with 32,000 bottles of her scent and contacted the company to make sure it was an expected delivery. That’s when Jivago realized counterfeiters were siphoning off her business. She embarked on a five-year journey to trace the sources and shut down the counterfeiting ring. Along the way, she shared her knowledge with others who were the victims of fakes. Through detective work, they traced back the company who had been importing the counterfeit goods. It was a costly and lengthy investigation spearheaded by Jivago and probably cost her business more than $30 million.“Beyond the money, it was the safety and brand protection,” added Jivago. When the U.S. government was reticent to assist, Jivago devoted $900,000 of her money to get to the bottom of the issue. It also took her away from what she loved best, creating new scents. “I’m not as big as Estée Lauder, who has deep pockets for dealing with issues like that,” she said. “But I really love what I do.”Now with safeguards in place, including holographic chips to track the products, Jivago is back in the launch business. She’s gone the extra mile to attach the chips to the bottle and box, since sometimes counterfeiters remove the bottle from packaging. She’d also like to see the formation of an organization to help protect small- to medium-size companies from counterfeiters. “The money it takes to save your brand can be devastating to a company or brand in the process [if fighting fakes]."One of the launches is called The Gift, which Jivago said she created to recognize the importance of taking time for one’s self. It features top notes of ylang-ylang, musk, peach and basil blended with Lily of the Valley, jasmine and rose. The dry down has notes of a cocktail of white musk, amber and vanilla. Retailing for $180, Jivago can keep control on distribution by selling it exclusively online.Additionally, the company is introducing Exotic Noire. It was developed with autumn and winter nights in mind with top notes of Tagete, Davina and a secret fruit. “Think fireplace, cozy settings, red wine and warm colors,” said Jivago.While online will play a key role in distribution, Jivago also hopes to link up with physical store retailers, a distribution channel that was key for 24K. “I want to make fragrances that don’t smell like others. I love to get letters from customers who say my fragrances helped change their lives,” she said. Plans also call to license the Jivago brand. There are already two deals for lifestyle products with plans for skin care, health-related items like a spa line, color cosmetics and aromatherapy.
EXCLUSIVE: Two and half months after John Targon, cofounder and codesigner of Baja East, was hired as creative director of the contemporary division at Marc Jacobs, he has left the company, WWD has learned. Marc Jacobs International, which is owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, confirmed Targon’s departure in a statement: “John Targon is a talented designer and we appreciate the work he has done here. Ultimately working together did not make sense for the brand and we wish him the best.” Read the story by @jessiredale, link in bio. #wwdnews
@theluxurycollection is officially launching a collection, tapping Sofia Sanchez de Betak for the capsule. Over 30 styles will be featured in the Chufy x The Luxury Collection, debuting next month at Bergdorf Goodman, The Webster, FiveStory and more. De Betak, known as “@chufy,” drew inspiration for the collection from her trips to Japan in the past year #wwdfashion
@lhd, founder and CEO of @thewebster, has teamed up with @lebonmarcherivegauche for the European launch of her ready-to-wear line, LHD. The launch will come with an exclusive pop-up opening today that’s set to run through May 20. Located on the second floor, it carries her debut Miami-themed resort collection, launched in November as see-now-buy-now. #wwdfashion
@longchamp, which marks its 70th anniversary this year, just opened its biggest U.S. store on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. On the lower level there’s a floor-to-ceiling display of the brand’s iconic Le Pliage bag – in all of its different colors, shapes and sizes. Customers can also have their product personalized in-store by imprinting names, initials or emblems. #wwdfashion (📷: @ericmtownsend)
“Whenever I’m in that place of sound and music, I don’t have fear or nervousness…This album has a lot of themes of courage and boldness and I want to be the soundtrack for people’s lives. I’ll be so happy if [my songs] evoke strength in people, which I know music has done for me,” says @kimbramusic of her newest album “Primal Heart.” The New Zealand-born singer sat down with WWD to talk about her music, newest tour and connecting with hear fans — read more on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
Luxury handbag resale company @rebagofficial is planning to sell a rare collectible for $70,000: the @hermes White Crocodile Himalayan Birkin. The exclusive Birkin sold for about $100,000 in 2008, when @davidbeckham bought one for his wife @victoriabeckham to add to her collection. Read more about the rare Birkin on WWD.com #wwdaccessories
With her costume pearl necklace and what-you-see-is-what-you-get style, Barbara Bush, who died Tuesday at age 92, was a straight-shooter from start to finish.
Born Barbara Pierce in New York City, Bush served as the 37th first lady, as well as the country’s second lady from 1981 to 1989. In addition to being part of the longest presidential marriage — 73 years — Bush also had the unlikely distinction of having one son, George W., become the 43rd president and another son, Jeb, run unsuccessfully in 2016. Having served as second lady during the Reagan administration’s two terms and lived all over the world during her own husband’s ascending political career, Barbara Bush made it clear that literacy — not fashion — was her priority. Read more from Rosemary Feitelberg’s obituary on the late First Lady in WWD.com, link in bio. #barbarabush #wwdnews
Western and ’90s trends have influenced denim for fall 2018. Think raw, dark and coated jeans mixed with bold prints and tough leather. #trendtuesdays #wwdfashion (Styled by @thealexbadia;📷: @ryanplett)