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Vince Camuto Adds Men’s Pillar

Come April 1, Camuto will bolster his fragrance category with a new men’s pillar called Homme.

For Vince Camuto, more is more.

This story first appeared in the March 28, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

With a growing franchise spanning more than 40 categories of apparel, accessories and beauty, Camuto says business — across the board — is booming.

People are looking for that design-inspired feeling but at the right price point,” said Camuto. “Whether it’s perfume or shoes, I think what happens is that there isn’t a choice level that you can have [at a certain price].”

Come April 1, Camuto, who works closely with Camuto Group creative director Louise Camuto, will bolster his fragrance category with a new men’s pillar called Homme. According to Don Loftus, chief executive officer of Parlux, Camuto’s fragrance licensee, “Vince Camuto’s fragrance category is five times what it was the first year.” In fact, sales of the brand’s fragrances [Homme brings the count to five] are up 141 percent. “We are in our third year and in an industry that’s been sort of stagnant for a decade, this franchise seems to grow in leaps in bounds,” said Loftus. “Sometimes when you launch more than one scent it cannibalizes [the business] but that hasn’t happened.”

The fragrance, a follow-up to the brand’s 2012 debut men’s offering called simply Vince Camuto, is meant to evoke a “clean, crisp, refreshing” effect, according to Camuto, adding that inspiration for his scents often sprouts from his garden.

“It’s another option where men can style themselves,” he added of the scent, created by perfumer Steve Demercado of Fragrance Resources.

Designed to nod to the Mediterranean’s colors and coastline, the juice is a medley of citron, ozone and gin and tonic atop a heart of fennel, blue cypress, juniper berry, French lavender, and a base of spruce, Atlas Cedar, armoise, warm musk and white birch. Homme will be priced at $57 for a 1.7-oz. eau de toilette spray and $70 for a 3.4-oz. size, as well as a 2.75-oz. deodorant stick for $17.

With the central notion of offering well-designed, well-priced clothes, accessories and scents, the Vince Camuto core brand [Camuto also owns specialty lines VC Signature, Two By Vince Camuto and Louise et Cie] is available in 62 countries and 5,400 doors worldwide, a number expected to jump to 70 countries by 2015. Industry sources estimate the Vince Camuto brand is expected to approach $1 billion in global retail sales by 2015.

With continued expansion on the horizon, Camuto is eyeing growth in markets like the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Central and South America. According to executives, 2014 will bring at least four new stand-alone stores in cities like Chicago and Washington, while additional footprints are being sought in Manhattan and the Tristate area.

Loftus believes part of the brand’s allure is the customer’s ability to shop the entire brand — from clothes to accessories to scent, which he said rarely happens when it comes to prestige fragrances.

“I think the consumer tends to reach up when it comes to fragrance,” he said, underscoring that most department stores do not carry many of the clothes and accessories by the same prestige brands available on the fragrance floor.

Homme, which will be sold globally through 2,500 department store doors, is expected by industry sources to generate $30 million in its first year at retail.