Bond No. 9 to Give ‘Peace’ a Chance
NEW YORK — Fragrance marketer Bond No. 9, which is known for its scents inspired by Manhattan neighborhoods, is set to launch a unisex fragrance called The Scent of Peace that — much as its name would suggest — is inspired by a state of harmony.
“It’s a message of peace from New York to the world — it’s a symbolic image,” said Laurice Rahme, founder of Bond No. 9. “Hopefully, it’s the place we all want to live in.” She added that The Scent of Peace was one of her more challenging projects, since it’s meant to address a concept that extends beyond neighborhood boundaries and targets a much broader consumer base than previous Bond No. 9 scents.
The Scent of Peace, which was created by Michel Almairac of Robertet, features top notes of grapefruit and black currant, middle notes of lily of the valley and hedione and base notes of cedarwood and musk. The fragrance is packaged in a lavender frosted version of Bond No. 9’s signature, star-shaped bottle. Its graphics feature a purple dove drawn “in the spirit of Picasso,” said Rahme, to symbolize peace.
The fragrance is priced at $195 for a 3.4-oz. bottle and at $120 for a 1.7-oz bottle. An accompanying candle is priced at $85. The scent will also be available for $45 per oz., either in a 2-oz. spray flacon that costs an additional $25 or in one of an assortment of Bond No. 9 decorated bottles, which range in price from $40 to $70. Bond No. 9 plans to donate $2 from the sale of each peace-inspired fragrance to UNICEF.
The scent will be launched in May and carried at Bond No. 9’s four New York boutiques, in 27 Saks Fifth Avenue doors and at about a dozen boutiques and spas nationwide. International plans call for the scent to be introduced in June at 180 doors including Harvey Nichols in the U.K., Lane Crawford in Hong Kong and Paris Gallery in Dubai.
The Scent of Peace, which is Bond No. 9’s 25th scent, could do up to $1 million in first-year sales, according to Rahme.
Rahme, who keeps a running list of neighborhoods that customers request, is not concerned about running out of ideas for New York scents. “People [ask], ‘What about my neighborhood?'” she said. “We have a grassroots movement going on here. We do what the consumer asks us to do.” She said she could do at least another 50 scents, including two more fragrances planned for this year — Fire Island in June and West Side Story in November.
Rahme is also planning to open two more Bond No. 9 boutiques, in Manhattan’s Harlem and Chelsea neighborhoods by yearend, for a total of six stores. Elsewhere on the expansion front, Rahme expects to increase the number of international markets that carry Bond No. 9 by yearend to 10: Austria, Russia, Asia, South Africa, Switzerland, Holland, England, Germany, Italy and the Middle East. Rahme projects the company will have total revenues of $30 million, 67 percent of which is expected to be domestic turnover, by yearend.
Next year, Rahme is planning a Bond No. 9 makeup line, called Talk of the Town. It is to include an assortment of color cosmetics subdivided into ranges tied to Bond No. 9’s neighborhood fragrances. She also has four fragrances planned for next year: Astor Place, Sutton Place, Union Square and a yet-to-be named Brooklyn fragrance.
— Michelle Edgar
Stila Said Drawing Interest Down Under
NEW YORK — Reports are circulating that the leading contender to acquire the Stila indie cosmetics brand from the Estée Lauder Cos. is an investment group led by Jane McKellar, who was managing director of Elizabeth Arden in Australia. A spokeswoman at Lauder declined comment, saying, “We can’t comment on rumors.” A spokeswoman for Arden could not be reached.
Sources stressed that nothing has yet been signed and negotiations are still in progress. In October, Lauder said it had decided to sell Stila, a makeup artist brand it acquired in 1999. While the company would not disclose volume figures, industry sources then estimated Stila’s sales at $35 million to $45 million at retail in the U.S.
“Stila has been part of the family for the last seven years,” William Lauder, Lauder president and chief executive officer, said in October. “We feel that we’ve given it enough time to make a go of it,” he said then, adding that ultimately, Stila didn’t prove as strategically important as its fellow makeup artist brands MAC Cosmetics and Bobbi Brown.