CHICAGO — Services will be held here this morning for Barry Shipp, a former top fragrance executive who was one of the founders of Jovan in the late Sixties.
Shipp, who had previously suffered from heart trouble, died at hiis home here early Monday morning of apparent cardiac arrest, according to his son Gregg.
He had first come to prominence when the American fragrance industry began to emerge in full force.
Shipp had worked in sales at Revlon, beginning in 1960, and rose to Midwest sales manager by 1963.
During visits to New York’s Greenwich Village, Shipp noticed young people buying vials of musk oil, which was prized for its purported ability to attract the opposite sex.
In 1968, Shipp joined forces with Chicago entrepreneur Bernard Mitchell and founded Jovan.
The company’s first big hit was Jovan Musk, which was the locomotive for one of the most powerful fragrance categories in U.S. history.
Shipp, executive vice president, and Mitchell, chairman, were joined by Dick Myer, president, whose advertising and packaging expertise helped make Jovan a force in the industry.
The trio sold the company to Beecham Products in 1979 and Myer and Shipp continued to run the firm, then known as Beecham Cosmetics.
Shipp was named president in 1985 after Myer left. With Joseph Armando, Shipp led a management buyout of the company 1988 and renamed it Quintessence Inc.
The company was resold in 1991 to Benckiser GmbH, which subsequently reorganized Quintessence’s assets into its Coty division.
After the expiration of a three-year noncompete clause, Shipp and Armando formed Shiara Inc., which marketed mass market fragrances such as Sunset Cafe, Cloud Dance and NFL Cologne.
The business was sold to CCA Industries Inc. in a March 1998 licensing deal.
Shipp, a firm believer in living life to the fullest, developed an interest in horse racing while convalescing from one of his bouts with heart trouble. He ended up owning close to 50 horses.
In addition to Gregg, Shipp is survived by his wife, Mary Ellen; a daughter, Lara, and another son, Drew.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 this morning at Peyser Weinstein funeral chapel at 5206 North Broadway in Chicago.