VERSACE SKIN CARE COMES TO U.S.

Byline: Nicole Kaldes

MILAN — Get set for the Versace treatment — skin care, that is.
Donatella Versace is gearing up for her Nov. 1 appearance in Barney’s New York’s Madison Avenue store to kick off the U.S. introduction of the 12-stockkeeping-unit Versace Skincare line. The products, which are produced with a Japanese cosmetics firm, will be sold in 30 U.S. doors, including Barney’s and Neiman Marcus. In six months, that number should rise to 80.
For Versace, skin care is the natural next step, since it already has fragrance and makeup in its portfolio, explained Ferdinando Silva Coronel, managing director of Giver Profumi, Versace’s beauty division, in an exclusive interview with WWD. The move is also part of his ongoing renovation of the Versace beauty brand. Since his arrival in 2000, Coronel has focused on remodeling packaging and developing new brands.
While he would not talk numbers, industry sources estimate the skin care line will ring up wholesale volume of $2.5 million in the U.S. next year. Within five years, Coronel said skin care should represent about 35 percent of the company’s overall sales. For 2000, Versace Profumi volume was $64 million.
Coronel described Versace Skincare as a marriage between Japanese technology and the house’s luxury aesthetic. “We [combined the Versace image] with Japan’s natural, vegetable technology and modern cleanliness,” he explained.
Products are divided into cleansing, moisturizing and corrective categories and include natural ingredients such as whey. The line includes 150-ml. Foaming and Creamy cleaners, a 125-ml. Eye Cleanser and 200-ml. Gentle and Rich tonics, each for $33; a 40-ml. Hydra Gel and Hydra Cream, each for $63; 40-ml. Active Skin Repairing Cream for $85; a 40-ml. Anti-Wrinkles Repairing Cream for $100; a 20-ml. Eye-Zone Repairing Cream for $65, and 150-ml. Hydra and Nourish body care each for $55.
All figures are at current exchange rates from the lire and are for Italy.
The skin care items are packaged in opaque glass or plastic bottles with gold-specked hues and gold or translucent caps. Also featured is Versace’s trademark Greek post and lintel design.
Versace started introducing the treatment products in mid-October in 800 Italian doors, followed by the U.K., France, Germany and Austria. An advertising campaign is slated to break in 2002, when the product is rolled out to the rest of the world.

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