Burt's Bees is on course to increase sales by 25 percent this year due to new retail accounts, a bevy of interesting products and a new chief executive officer who's keeping true to the company's natural positioning.
NEW YORK — Burt's Bees is on course to increase sales by 25 percent this year due to new retail accounts, a bevy of interesting products and a new chief executive officer who's keeping true to the company's natural positioning — and convincing retailers it's in their best interest to take the category seriously, too.
John Replogle, who left Unilever's skin care division earlier this year to lead Burt's Bees, is homing in on retailers who are "committed to natural care" and willing to "dedicate their resources and carve out space within their existing personal care set" for a brand that can anchor the category.
He is making headway. Burt's Bees is set to enter approximately 200 Ulta stores and 1,200 GNC stores in July and August.
The importance of health and wellness, and how these two factors are increasingly playing a prominent role in consumers' lives, is what Replogle said will drive interest in the brand.
"More consumers are getting into this and I think natural is really going to blossom — across all categories of personal care," he said.
Mike Indursky, Burt's Bees chief marketing and strategic officer, said retailers call the company all the time asking to buy their products, but the brand is cautious about only partnering with those who are committed to the category. For now, Burt's Bees is mostly found in prominent end caps, or "stand-alone hives" as Replogle said, in retailers such as Walgreens and CVS, as well as gift stores, boutiques and health food stores such as Whole Foods.
Including the new distribution set for this year, Burt's Bees will be carried in about 22,000 doors nationwide. But Replogle and Indursky are working to get retailers interested in bringing the category in-line, along with other naturally positioned brands, such as Nature's Gate and Jason, and even Aveeno in the mass world.
While consumers are definitely more receptive to trying brands such as Burt's Bees these days — which avoid using synthetic foaming agents — getting the product in their hands is the best way to drive trial, even better than traditional advertising efforts, said Replogle.
"This is how they built the business," he said, referring to Burt's Bees founders Roxanne and Renee Quimby. "It's all about trying them because once they smell the products and feel them they want to use them."Following this logic, a nationwide tour is under way that brings the company's 16 newest items — as well as its classics — into the hands of consumers in 30 markets across the country. Some of the items on the tour, which ship to stores in July and August, include Raspberry & Brazil Nut Shampoo and Conditioner ($7.99), Peach and Willow Bark Deep Pore Scrub ($7.99), Honey & Shea Butter Body Butter ($12.99) and a new face line incorporating royal jelly into formulas, called Radiance. The new line offers a Day Creme, a Night Creme and an Eye Cream, each of which will retail for $14.99.
Industry sources said the items could generate as much as $20 million in sales in their first year in stores, bringing overall company sales to $125 million for the year.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast