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Revlon Names Julia Goldin to Top Marketing Post

Julia Goldin is a veteran of Coca-Cola, where she was senior vice president and deputy chief marketing officer.

Revlon Products Inc. has named a marketing czarina, filling a post that had been left vacant for four years.

The beauty brand, which is 79 percent owned by Ronald Perelman, has recruited Coca-Cola veteran Julia Goldin to the post of senior vice president and global chief marketing officer, effective immediately. She will report to Chris Elshaw, Revlon’s executive vice president and chief operating officer.

“The Revlon brand itself is very iconic — it’s about modernity, glamour and feeling confident. That’s the element I’d like to bring in,” said Goldin, who joins Revlon from Japan, where she was senior vice president and deputy chief marketing officer of The Coca-Cola Co., overseeing the coffee business, “and to re-create the dream that Charles Revson created — aspiration within reach. No woman ever puts on makeup and doesn’t feel better.”

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Born in Saint Petersburg, Russia, Goldin moved to Illinois as a teenager and attended business school at the University of Chicago, and later worked for Coca-Cola in London and Tokyo.

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Goldin’s post brings all of Revlon’s marketing functions under one roof, which had previously been divided across the company’s nine global portfolio leaders, who manage specific brands. Going forward, global portfolio leaders will report Goldin, who will also oversee communications and public relations functions. The post of marketing chief had been vacant since the departure of Stephanie Klein Peponis as part of a management shake-up at the firm in 2006.

Alan Ennis, Revlon president and chief executive officer, said of Goldin, “Her role fits very well with our corporate strategy to build our strong brands and drive growth globally. Julia offers a global perspective to what had been a fairly regional view.” Ennis said he anticipates that he, Elshaw and Goldin, and the functions of research and development, product development, marketing and sales, will be “joined at the hip.”

“Marketing needs to touch all angles,” said Goldin, adding the aim is to “link product development with the way it touches the consumers.”

Dropping in on an interview with Goldin on Tuesday morning, Perelman called her a “dynamo.”

Goldin is now based in New York, and in between finding an apartment and settling her two children into life in Manhattan — her nine-year-old started school on Tuesday — she plans to travel frequently.

“To be successful and expand, you need to understand the consumer and the people you are working with. Even in the age of technology, personal relationships are key,” said Goldin. “I love connecting with people from different cultures. It’s a huge opportunity for Revlon to build on international expansion. The business is heavily centered on the U.S. Revlon, in particular, is such a great brand to take into new [market] opportunities around the world.”

Revlon sells its wares in more than 100 countries and international sales account for 45 percent of the business, said Ennis, who added he anticipates the firm’s business outside the U.S. to grow at an increasingly faster clip. He also sees an opportunity to expand the global research of other brands in the portfolio, including Almay, Mitchum and ColorSilk.

Goldin, who speaks fluent English and Russian and “dabbles in Japanese,” has her eyes set on Asia, where she named China, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan and India as countries ripe for expansion. She said Revlon’s high-end skin care range Gatineau has gained traction in China, while Ultima II cosmetics is a top brand in Hong Kong.

In addition to her work potentially boosting the top line, Goldin will also help oversee Revlon’s philanthropic causes, including breast cancer research.

“Iconic brands are connected to something deeper than the product itself,” she said.