NEW YORK — When you’ve got a rich tuberose juice and are looking for plus-sales in warmer months, what do you do?
This story first appeared in the January 24, 2003 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
If you’re Michael Kors,?you formulate a lighter interpretation.
“We’ve been adding ancillaries since the original scent launched, so it just made sense to build the brand with another juice,” said Camille McDonald, president and chief executive officer of Parfums Givenchy, American Designer Fragrances and Guerlain, of the Michael Kors juice, which launched in September 2000. “The original juice is doing very well, and we’re about to launch Michael’s bridge scent, Kors. But we wanted to take the original to the next level.”
McDonald is doing that by creating Sheer Michael, a fragrance that, at least at first, will be offered as a limited-edition summer scent, following a time-honored tradition to which many brands have subscribed. It will hit counters in April and is expected to be sold-through by the end of August.
The scent is a play on the original juice, although the two juices are the work of different fragrance suppliers. The lighter version is by Creations Aromatique, while the original is by Mane USA. Sheer Michael’s top notes are of cypress, sweet orange, Italian bergamot, Sicilian Mandarin and blue topaz accord; its middle notes are of Bulgarian rose, geranium, Moroccan tuberose, ylang ylang, marigold, jasmine and muguet, and its bottom notes are of Virginia cedar, sandalwood, Baltic amber and sheer musk.
The target consumer is 18- to 45-years old, and may or may not wear the original Michael Kors scent, noted Marianne Darlak, vice president of marketing for Michael Kors Fragrances. “We think the juice will appeal to Michael’s existing customers, as well as draw in a new user group,” she said.
The new packaging shares the original’s glass block shape with an M faceted into the glass, although its cap is matte white and the original’s is camel.
The Sheer Michael lineup will include three stockkeeping units: a 1.7-oz. eau de parfum, $50; a 5.1-oz. body lotion, $40, and Sheer Highlights for Face and Body, a bronzer-type product, $35. Sheer Highlights is similar to a more expensive ancillary, Glam Bronzer, an ancillary to the original Kors fragrance, which is sold in specialty doors and priced at $50. The new Sheer Highlights will be available only in department stores, while the other sku’s will be available in all doors.
While neither executive would comment on projected sales, industry sources estimated that the lineup would do about $3 million at retail. The scent will be available in the full Kors distribution — about 800 department and specialty store doors in the U.S., including Nordstrom, Marshall Field’s and Macy’s.
National advertising isn’t part of the plan, although sampling is — more than 14 million scented pieces promoting the original and the sheer version, as well as 500,000 vials, are slated to be distributed.