PARIS — Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are no strangers to working up a sweat. That means The One Sport — their first men’s sport fragrance, and latest project — was hardly a stretch.
The scent, created by the Italian design duo and their fragrance licensee, Procter & Gamble, is due out starting in early February.
“Sports have always been an inspiration for our men’s wear,” explained Gabbana. “We’ve even shown it on the runway, as part of the Gym collection, and have a dedicated section to Gym in our store in Milan, for example. It’s not technically sportswear, but inspired by it.”
Dolce & Gabbana has also sponsored numerous sports teams, including AC Milan and Chelsea FC, Italy’s national rugby and swimming teams and the Milano Thunder boxing team. The designers have their own gym, as well.
“We’ve had swimmers, soccer and rugby players model in our campaigns,” continued Gabbana. “We dress [Lionel] Messi, [David] Beckham. We are friends with soccer players.
“This fragrance project goes back three years,” he continued. “It’s in our nature. We are fashion people — not technical — but we love doing sports. We don’t live for sports, but they are part of our lives. We enjoy them.”
Gabbana himself has been personally involved in high jump, swimming, boxing and military circuits. “Domenico enjoys running, cycling, aerobics and cross-training,” said Gabbana. “He loves to watch sports events, races. He knows all about sports and the champs.”
Gabbana said The One Sport is inspired by daily life. “We have friends that go to the gym. They are each very different from one another, but they all enjoy going to the gym for themselves, to feel good about themselves,” he said. “As the Latins said, ‘Mens sana in corpore sano [or a sound mind in a healthy body, in English].’ ”
In that vein, The One Sport’s video advertising features model Adam Senn entering an ancient stadium, where he begins to train. As filmed by Mariano Vivanco, Senn’s like “a warrior in the modern-day arena,” said Luigi Feola, general manager for global luxury brands at Procter & Gamble. The 30- and 45-second spots are destined for TV, cinema and online. There are also single- and double-page print ads.
“We didn’t want to focus on one specific sport,” noted Gabbana. “It’s a boy preparing for the Olympic games, in Greece or Rome. And we wanted a model that would represent a sportsman, with a fit and athletic body, but not too muscular, and remote from a bodybuilder-in-the-1980s style.”
“It will be the strongest [campaign] ever in terms of any launch we have done [for Dolce & Gabbana],” said Feola, adding there is to be lots of muscle put behind the fragrance to sustain it for years.
The designers had a fresh scent in mind “that could be associated with sports but also with a feeling of cleanliness, an energetic and fresh mood — almost Mediterranean,” said Gabbana.
The juice itself, composed by Dolce and Gabbana with the P&G fragrance creation team and Givaudan, is an aromatic patchouli, “which has always been one of the designers’ favorite olfactory notes,” said Feola. Also in the fragrance are watery, cardamom and musky notes, plus accents of rosemary and a woody Sequoia Forest accord.
The One Sport’s geometric bottle is meant to “give a sense of freshness, cleanliness and authenticity, with its transparent glass,” said Gabbana. “When I end my sports [training], I feel happy and clean, tired but serene, and we want to convey this sense of transparency with the bottle.”
P&G executives have great expectations for The One Sport, which builds on Dolce & Gabbana’s already strong men’s scent portfolio.
“We expect the sales for this to be incremental and to attract new consumers to the franchise,” said Feola. P&G executives would not discuss sales figures, but industry sources estimate The One Sport will generate $200 million in first-year retail sales globally.
Further, the sport segment is the fastest-growing category in the male fragrance industry, clocking a 37 percent sales gain over the past year.
The One Sport will be introduced in early February in the U.K., followed at the end of that month in Italy and the U.S. in early March. The rest of the world is to get the scent soon thereafter and prior to the summer Olympics.
In the U.S. — where the fragrance will be sold in specialty and department stores — the 1-oz. eau de toilette spray will be $45; the 1.6-oz. version, $57, and the 3.3-oz. iteration, $73. There are to be ancillaries, as well.
Dolce & Gabbana’s The One scent franchise started in 2006, with the introduction of a women’s scent. Two years later, a men’s version was launched. The other pillars in the brand portfolio are Light Blue and the classic Dolce & Gabbana scent lines.
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