NEW YORK — Seven years after forming niche fragrance marketer Creative Universe, Beth Terry is poised to launch a second series of fragrances. Meanwhile, the company has experienced a boost following a rollout in Japan of its four existing scents: Té, Mare, Luce and Vita.
This story first appeared in the January 28, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
While Terry’s newest fragrance venture is still in its formative stages, the Asian expansion of her Italian-inspired collection has given the business a shot in the arm. After initially launching at Barneys in Japan six years ago, the scents were introduced in 20 doors in Japan last fall.
Industry sources estimate the Asian rollout increased sales 25 percent, pushing Creative Universe toward the $500,000 mark in sales volume. With media exposure — including a recent appearance in Japanese model Rikaco’s fashion and lifestyle catalogue, called Rikaco’s Choice — sources project Creative Universe’s Japan business could double, nearing $250,000 this year.
“Right now, I’m concentrating on the Japanese market,” said Terry, who acknowledged the opportunity “fell into my lap.” While Creative Universe’s U.S. distribution is limited to about a dozen doors, it was at Maxwell’s in Los Angeles that Marvin Yasuda, an associate at trading company One World Access, spotted her scents.
One World Access then secured a deal with Paddle, an upscale apparel showroom in Tokyo. For the past four months, Paddle has handled distribution and media relations in Japan for Creative Universe, its only beauty client.
Terry’s newest fragrance is an entry slated for spring that’s to be called Element of Surprise, or E.O.S. It is described as a sweet citrus scent and plans call for the packaging to be smaller than her four existing scents, which each come in 4.3-oz. bottles. After E.O.S., Terry plans to do three more fragrances, all following the initials motif.
— Matthew W. Evans
PARIS — Swiss flavors and fragrances group Givaudan announced it is implementing margin-improvement initiatives designed to lead to annual savings of $82.2 million at current exchange rates, or 67 million Swiss francs.
As part of the plan, Givaudan said in a statement it will eliminate 300 jobs within the company through “attrition/retirement and targeted job reductions.” It said some staff reductions had taken place in the second half of 2003.
“Additionally, a number of nonheadcount-related initiatives are under way, which will contribute to further operational improvements,” the firm said in the statement.
A one-time restructuring cost of $85.5 million, or 68 million Swiss francs, will be reflected in the 2003 profits that will be announced March 2.
— Brid Costello
Avon Taps Executive Pair
NEW YORK — Avon Products Inc. has appointed two senior executives within the ranks of its international operations.
Robert Toth, 51, will become executive vice president, international, on Feb. 1, a new position based in New York. Toth, a 25-year veteran of Avon, has served as executive vice president, Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East, since 2002.
In addition to his current duties, Toth will oversee the company’s Latin America region in his new post and continue to report to Susan J. Kropf, Avon’s president and chief operating officer.
“Under [Toth’s] leadership,” Kropf stated, “sales in our overall European business have grown at a compounded annual rate of more than 20 percent since 2000, and our markets in Central and Eastern Europe are on track to have sales of $1 billion in 2005.”
Additionally, Avon named John Owen, 45, senior vice president, Europe, Middle East and Africa. Owen, who will report to Toth in his new post, was most recently senior vice president of business transformation, overseeing the company’s supply chain.