PARIS — Escada will introduce its 12th limited-edition seasonal fragrance, called Island Kiss, worldwide starting in February.

This story first appeared in the January 15, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Inspiration for the scent came from both the Greek islands and a miniskirt-and-bikini-top ensemble from Escada’s spring-summer collection. The fragrance’s outer packaging features a cartoon character wearing the outfit, while its bottle is a combination of pink and blue hues.

Industry sources estimate Island Kiss could ring up $3.72 million at current exchange rates, or 3 million euros, in wholesale volume in France. As usual, the fragrance will be on sale until supplies run out.

“Every year [Escada’s seasonal scents] work better and better,” said Marine Gaertner, France’s operational marketing manager for numerous Wella-owned beauty brands, including Escada, Trussardi and Anna Sui. She noted last year’s seasonal scent, Ibiza Hippie, generated double the business of the prior one-shot.

Island Kiss’ juice, concocted by Drom’s Philippe Romano, features top notes of mango, passion fruit and orange. Heart notes include a “radiant accord” — meant to be reminiscent of sun-drenched beaches and crashing waves — of magnolia and white peach. The scent’s base has notes of red fruit, hibiscus, pale wood and musks.

The fragrance will be available in 30-, 50- and 100-ml. eau de toilette sprays, which will retail for $42.40, $56.50 and $75.80, or 33 euros, 44 euros and 59 euros, respectively, in France. A 150-ml. body milk and a 150-ml. shower gel will sell for $25.70 and $21.80, or 20 euros and 17 euros, respectively.

Island Kiss’ launch will be backed starting in March by a single-page advertising campaign featuring model Caroline Ribeiro wearing the Escada bikini top and miniskirt. It was shot by Steven Meisel.

— Brid Costello

Changes at Lancaster

PARIS — Two executive changes have been announced at Lancaster Group, Coty Inc.’s prestige division, and are effective immediately.

Steffen Seifarth has been named general manager, Lancaster Group Germany. He replaces Leo Van Wellig, who left the company. Seifarth joined Lancaster in 2002 as vice president, marketing services. He formerly worked at Procter & Gamble and Lycos Bertelsmann.

Francois Saurel succeeds Seifarth as vice president, marketing services for Lancaster Group Worldwide. Saurel joined the firm two months ago, as director of trade marketing, from P&G.

Lancaster beauty brands include Davidoff, Jennifer Lopez, Lancaster, Jil Sander, Marc Jacobs and Kenneth Cole, among others.

— Jennifer Weil

Clinique’s Asian Ads

NEW YORK — Clinique will depart from its traditional advertising campaigns in Asia this spring, launching a campaign that is specifically designed for the Asian market.

Unlike the brand’s ads elsewhere, featuring large product shots, the new campaign features a model — with copy clearly spelling out product benefits next to the shot. The campaign is for the Active White Lab Solutions line of whitening products that Clinique is launching in Asia this spring.

“Just as Clinique has been developing specific skin care products for the Asian markets for the past 25 years, we felt it was important to develop advertising that speaks in a relevant tone to Asian women,” said Philip Shearer, a group president for the Estée Lauder Cos. and global president of Clinique, in a statement. “The new Clinique Active White Lab Solutions line represents a new generation in whitening products for Clinique, so it is fitting that this cutting-edge campaign is launched around Active White.”

The new campaign also features a photographer who is new to the brand. Guido Mocafico, a Paris-based fashion and beauty photographer who is also a contributor to the Italian and French editions of Vogue, shot the Active White ads; the brand’s other campaigns have all been shot by famed fashion and beauty photographer Irving Penn.

— Julie Naughton

Beiersdorf’s Record High

Berlin — Operating profits at Beiersdorf reached a record level of $612 million, or 480 million euros, in 2003, according to preliminary figures released Tuesday. This compares with a 2002 EBIT of $594.2 million, or 466 million euros. All dollar figures are calculated from the euro at current exchange rates.

The German maker of Nivea said profits after taxes rose to about $382.5 million, 300 million euros, up from $363.4, 285 million euros, the year earlier. This represents over 6 percent of sales.

While Beiersdorf cited strong international sales, the soft domestic market and currency effects pushed 2003 group sales down 1.5 percent to $5.96 billion, 4.673 billion euros. At constant exchange rates, sales grew by 4 percent, Beiersdorf said.

The Cosmed division generated sales of $4 billion, 3.136 billion euros, down 1 percent at current exchange rates. Adjusted for currency effects, sales grew 4.1 percent. The group said sales declined in Germany, Russia, Brazil and Japan, but achieved double-digit growth in “many other countries.” Cosmed’s EBIT return on sales reached about 13 percent.

For the year ahead, Beiersdorf is projecting sales growth of about 7 percent at constant exchange rates and “further profit improvements.”

— Melissa Drier