As one of the first prestige brands to enter Ulta, Urban Decay knew it was taking a calculated risk.

This story first appeared in the August 5, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Wende Zomnir, cofounder and chief cre- ative officer, doesn’t regret the decision at all.

“Ulta has prioritized us, in terms of positioning the brand to their consumer,” Zomnir said. “Urban Decay was one of the first pres- tige brands to be sold at Ulta, and our initial relation- ship has developed into a stronger and more suc- cessful partnership than I could have ever imagined when we launched in 2004. When Ulta began, it was a very revolutionary concept to have mass and prestige under one roof. It had never been effectively done before.”

What’s made the difference for Ulta, said Zomnir, is the caliber of talent coupled with saying “yes” rather than “no” on a regular basis.

“Ulta has given us every opportunity to partner with them to succeed — advertising in their mailers and e-mails, and exposure throughout the store on tables, endcaps, the wrap desk and window banners,” Zomnir said. “They have also made us a prominent piece of their e-commerce business as they grow ulta.com.”

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In the last year, Zomnir noted, Ulta has moved Urban Decay’s merchan- dising placement to the front of the store and doubled the brand’s space in every location. Urban Decay sells 360 stockkeep- ing units across 16 different product categories in Ulta.

“They range in price from $10 travel-sized items to $60 eyeshadow palettes, and even some exclusives for $280,” Zomnir said.

“We have been hosting events at Ulta since 2006, and with their support we execute almost 400 events a year, some reaching up to $30,000 in retail sales.”

Urban Decay launches Ulta exclusives every year, said Zomnir.

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