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Benefit Taps Aurelian Lis

Aurelian Lis has been named general manager, North America, of Benefit Cosmetics.

Aurelian Lis has been named general manager, North America, of Benefit Cosmetics.

He will report to Jean-Andre Rougeot, chief executive officer of Benefit Cosmetics.

“It’s an exciting time to be at Benefit,” Lis told WWD on Friday, noting the brand will open two new cosmetics boutiques in the next few weeks; 12 now exist, clustered in the San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York City areas. Each averages around 800 square feet. “We will continue to innovate in the brow area with our Brow Bars — we started doing brows at the first Benefit boutique 35 years ago. We’re also developing other services.” The company operates a number of Brow Bars in department and specialty store doors such as Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s, which offer consumers the opportunity to get their brows tamed on the cosmetics floors of major retailers.

“I am confident that Aurelian will bring great energy and passion to Benefit,” stated Rougeot. “With significant recent growth, Benefit North America remains a key priority for us, and Aurelian will work closely with our key retailers to continue to build the Benefit brand in this important market.”

Before joining Benefit, Lis spent six years as president and co-founder of Prescribed Solutions, a customized skin care line sold through doctors’ offices. That firm was acquired by Biopelle Inc. in August 2009. He has also been chief operating officer for Delia’s Corp. and has worked for Unilever plc in a variety of strategic capacities focusing on brands such as Elizabeth Arden, Cerruti and Lagerfeld. Additionally, he has held a board position on the Duty Free Confederation, an industry group directing the lobbying for continuation of intra-European Duty Free.

“We are delighted to have found such a charismatic leader and not just another pretty face,” stated co-founders Jean and Jane Ford. “As Midwest gals, we couldn’t be happier as a new era in the U.S. commences, with the potential for enormous growth.” LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton owns 80 percent of the Benefit business, while the Fords retain 20 percent.