BEAUTY PAGEANT: Burberry has big dreams for its beauty — wholesale revenue in the division is expected to grow by about 25 percent at constant exchange rates this year — and it’s continuing to audition potential skin care partners.
John Demsey, group president of The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc., was recently spotted at Burberry’s London headquarters, Horseferry House. Burberry has declined to comment on its progress in the hunt for a skin-care partner, and an Estée Lauder Cos. spokeswoman said the company does not comment on market rumors.
One likely partner could be Shiseido, given that its Beauté Prestige International arm already works closely with Burberry on fragrances and makeup, distributing it in markets such as France, Spain and the United States. Groupe Clarins and Procter & Gamble could be among the other candidates.
Historically, it’s been very hard for fashion brands to prove their legitimacy in skin care and break successfully into the segment. Prada and Calvin Klein, for instance, are among those to have discontinued their treatment offerings. Fragrance is traditionally the most fruitful beauty category for fashion brands, followed by color cosmetics.
John Smith, Burberry’s chief operating officer, said during a conference call last year that, in skin care, “We are talking to a range of possible partners about a range of possible relationships.”