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Top Notes

LAUDER’S OPTIONS: The Estée Lauder Cos. chairman Leonard Lauder plans to sell 800,000 shares of the firm’s Class A common stock underlying options that expire in 2005. Approximately 200,000 shares will be sold each quarter for a year...

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LAUDER’S OPTIONS: The Estée Lauder Cos. chairman Leonard Lauder plans to sell 800,000 shares of the firm’s Class A common stock underlying options that expire in 2005. Approximately 200,000 shares will be sold each quarter for a year under a prearranged plan established for the orderly sale of the shares related to options granted in 1995. The shares slated for sale represent less than 1.5 percent of the shares and options beneficially owned directly or indirectly by Lauder, who may also sell other shares outside the plan as circumstances warrant. As of April 23, the firm had more than 230 million shares of Class A and Class B common stock outstanding.

RACHMANIS TO FIRMENICH: Daniel Rachmanis, currently chairman of TechPack International, will join Firmenich on June 1 in a senior management role overseeing operations in the Americas. In his new post, Rachmanis will report to Charles Drayson, Firmenich’s president of fine fragrances for North America.

MIXED RESULTS: Earnings rose but sales slipped at Henkel in the first quarter of 2003.

First-quarter operating profits at the Düsseldorf-based group were up 3.5 percent to $189.5 million, and return on sales was 7.2 percent for the period compared with 6.7 percent the previous year. All dollar figures are converted from the euro at current exchange rates. In the quarter, net profits rose 24.7 percent to $130.8 million and earnings per preferred share rose 22.1 percent to 94 cents per share.

Group sales, on the other hand, were down 3.1 percent to $2.6 billion. Adjusted for currency effects, sales for the quarter rose 2.8 percent, the company said.

Henkel’s beauty sales declined 3.8 percent to $552.7 million, but earnings before interest and taxes held steady at $47.4 million. Adjusted for foreign exchange effects, the beauty sales downturn was 0.2 percent. Return on sales improved to 8.6 percent from 8.3 percent the previous year.

STILA BLOOMS: Stila’s sales, well, bloomed at Bloomingdale’s last week. After a record-breaking personal appearance at Bloomingdale’s 59th Street flagship late last week —?which drew 325 people and reportedly generated upward of $25,000 at retail that day — founder Jeanine Lobell and her team followed it up with a two-day “Down With Love” artistry event in the store. The brand is the exclusive makeup partner for the film. The three-day combined total was said to be upward of $41,000.

MOLTON MOVE: Joe Bierman has joined Molton Brown’s U.S. subsidiary as chief operating officer. Most recently, Bierman worked as vice president of marketing for Sephora, where he oversaw strategic planning.

SMASHING: Smashbox Cosmetics has named Holly Mordini vice president of global artistry and education, a new position. Mordini, who has been with the brand for six years, will be responsible for building global brand awareness and growing retail sales.

THAT’S AMORE: Kathy Hughes has been named senior vice president of sales for AmorePacific, the prestige skin care brand that is scheduled to make its entry into the North American market in September.

HEAD START: Mother-daughter duo Sylvie and Olivia Chantecaille are celebrating Mother’s Day a bit early — today — with a launch event for a new Chantecaille fragrance called Le Jasmin at Bergdorf Goodman. The two will be on hand from 1-7 p.m.

LIGHT OF DAY: Executives at Ralph Lauren Fragrances were busy Wednesday promoting the brand’s latest scent — Glamorous Daylight. The day began with a public appearance at Bloomingdale’s by actress Penélope Cruz. Customers were lined up around the block while Cruz signed away for hours, claiming she got her energy from the fans. According to industry sources, the event garnered about $10,000 in sales. The same evening, a reception attended by beauty industry insiders was held at the Four Seasons Hotel to celebrate the launch. Cruz was again on hand to promote the fragrance and explained that “[Glamorous] Daylight is more for me. It has an antiglamour, glamour scent. You can wear it with jeans.”

INDUSTRY EXPOSURE: The Fragrance Foundation was on a mission this week to publicly highlight its annual FiFi awards, a campaign that went from the New York Stock Exchange to Bloomingdale’s on Tuesday. Maria Bartiromo, who anchors CNBC’s “Squawk Box” from the NYSE, read off nominees for six fragrance award categories at a morning press conference held at the exchange. “[Fragrance] is a $6 billion business and I follow a lot of these companies because they are listed here and at other exchanges,” she said, discussing her participation. Later, at Bloomingdale’s, MTV personality Hilarie Burton rounded out the field of 12 total award categories as customers looked on. The 31st annual FiFis are scheduled for June 9 at Lincoln Center and Harvey Fierstein is the scheduled host.

BEAUTY AT BERGDORF’S: Bergdorf Goodman and WWD’s sister publication, W magazine, hosted the first of four “Face to Face” panel discussions last Thursday at Goodman’s Café on the Beauty Level of the store. Hosted by W beauty director Jane Larkworthy, the event drew more than 50 people, who heard plastic surgeon Dr. Gregory Bays Brown, makeup artist Bobbi Brown, fragrance expert Sylvie Chantecaille and fitness expert David Kirsch discuss the topic, “Life-Changing Beauty.”

KASHUK BOOKING: Sonia Kashuk gave makeup consultations — in the Barnes & Noble at Manhattan’s Citigroup Center on April 25. The makeup artist was wrapping up the last leg of a five-city promotional tour for her book, “Real Beauty.”

PLANTING THE SEEDS: The Countess Sondes has created a collection of products based on the wheat seed oil from her Lees Court Estate in Kent, England, called Seeds, which is set to make its debut in Fred Segal Apothia, Bergdorf Goodman and specialty stores this month. The nine-stockkeeping-unit line includes bath, body, fragrance and home products, ranging in price from $25 to $40. Seeds is expected to ring up first-year retail sales of $1 million, according to industry sources.

ATTENTION SHOPPERS: Sephora’s new loyalty card, introduced May 1, is for consumers in France and Monaco. Cardholders can receive gifts and obtain invitations for events at the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton-owned chain. They may also accrue points on a one-per-euro basis. Once 150 points are amassed, cardholders will be offered a one-day 10 percent discount in Sephora for all items, except books and special offers.

KAMALI TO PRESENT: Fashion designer Norma Kamali is scheduled to present honors during the Independent Cosmetic Manufacturers and Distributors’ annual meeting and dinner in New York on June 5. Kamali will present the 2002 Cosmetic Entrepreneur Awards for Leadership during the event.

BROWN’S HONOR: Bobbi Brown will receive the New York Mission Society’s First Person Award at the Society’s annual awards gala next Thursday. The honor recognizes leadership in business, philanthropy and community service and both Brown and David Barger, president and chief executive of JetBlue Airways, will receive the award this year.

AWARD WINNING: Designs from Diam International, a merchandising hardware provider, recently won four of the Point of Purchase Advertising Institute’s Outstanding Merchandising Achievement awards. Three tester stands — one for Clarins makeup, another for Lancôme’s Purple Rain and a third for Nina Ricci product — were each honored. The fourth award was bestowed upon an Estée Lauder makeup station.

DEMETER DESIGNS: Demeter Fragrances is part of a Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum exhibition that will run until January 25. The show, called “National Design Triennial: Inside Design Now,” is the second in a series of exhibitions running at the museum once every three years. The exhibition features 80 designers or design groups working in the U.S. and highlights several dozen Demeter fragrances.

CANNES DO: MAC makeup artists will give makeovers to nominees, presenters and VIPs at the Cannes Film Festival beginning next week. These services will be offered in an area called the Kaleïden Beauty Space at the Carlton Hotel, which also will feature fashion designers and offer hair, facial and massage services.

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