PARIS — Parfums Christian Dior hopes to capture a new wrinkle-wary audience with its line of antiaging products called Capture First Action.

Starting worldwide in January 2004, the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton-owned firm will replace its three-year-old NoAge five-unit line with five Capture First Action products.

“NoAge was about prevention; [with Capture First Action] we went further and focused all [early antiaging] needs,” said Pierre Bouissou, care products marketing, communications and prospectives director at Dior.

Capture First Action targets the 25- to 35-year-old set and is meant to prevent and correct the appearance of first lines and wrinkles.

The new line tackles the first signs of aging with what Dior calls Tri-Ageproof technology. The technology works first, the company said, by safeguarding skin cells’ DNA by protecting the enzyme telomerase that shields cells from damaging agents. Second, it is said to relax skin, thereby reducing the impact of expression lines and wrinkles. Third, the product formulation is billed as having a resculpting effect on the skin for a younger-looking appearance.

The new line includes Age-Defense Refining Essence, a serum in 30- and 50-ml. pumps that will sell for $66.60 and $99.40 (57.05 euros and 85.18 euros), respectively; a 50-ml. jar of Age-Defense Refining Crème for $71.30 (61.08 euros); a 50-ml. pump of Age-Defense Refining Fluid for $71.30 (61.08 euros), and a 15-ml. pump of Age-Defense Refining Eye Serum for $47.60 (40.82 euros).

Dollar prices have been converted from the euro at current exchange rates.

While Bouissou declined to talk numbers, industry sources estimate Capture First Action could ring up $10.5 million to $12.3 million in wholesale volume its first year.

A double-page print advertising campaign will accompany the line’s launch. Samples, including sachets and miniatures, will be distributed in magazines and at points of sale.

With the introduction of Capture First Action, the 17-year-old Capture line will also include Capture Lift and Capture R60/80, which — as reported — is a nine-unit collection introduced in January to correct signs of aging.

Dior is reorganizing its product catalogue to offer its entire anti-aging line under the Capture franchise.“Capture will respond to all anti-aging needs,” explained Bouissou. “We don’t want to have 10,000 products. We want to have major franchises that respond to major needs.”

Also as part of Dior’s drive to bolster its treatment segment is a two-treatment-room spa that will be part of the Dior boutique to open in December in Tokyo’s Omotesando district.

Bouissou added: “It’s the strategy of the brand to open other institutes.”

— Brid Costello

Henkel Profits Up 11.7%


BERLIN — In the third quarter of 2003, the Henkel Group’s beauty division increased operating profits by 11.7 percent, while sales for the quarter remained almost at last year’s level.

Earnings before interest and taxesreached $51.9 million (44 million euros), which represented a 16.7 percent gain when adjusted for currency effects. Sales for the quarter reached $600.6 million (509 million euros), down a nominal 0.3 percent. On an adjusted basis, however, beauty sales for the period rose 3 percent. All dollar figures are calculated from the euro at current exchange rates.

Henkel said the hair cosmetics and skin care businesses performed very well, with growth coming from the Gliss Kur and Schauma hair care and Aok and Diadermine skin care brands. While consumer hair colorants maintained stable market positions, sales dipped slightly, the firm noted. In the professional market, sales rose for the quarter on a currency adjusted basis.

Looking ahead, Henkel said it expects a “slight improvement in the cosmetics markets worldwide in the fourth quarter and forecasts a steady development for the German market…We continue to aim for operating profit growth in the high single-digit percentage range after adjusting for foreign exchange effects.”

While Henkel said it continues to aim for a 4 percent increase in 2003 group sales, chief operating officer Ulrich Lehner suggested growth of between 3 and 4 percent is more likely. For 2004, however, the group, which includes laundry detergent and adhesives divisions, is projecting 4 percent organic growth.

— Melissa Drier

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