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The largest apparel, accessories and cosmetics companies headquartered in Manhattan ranked by market capitalization.

Some of the biggest names in fashion, accessories and beauty make their homes in New York City. Here, WWD takes a look at the largest of them based on market capitalization, a measure of their total value calculated by multiplying the number of shares outstanding by the current market price of one share. The top 10 all had a market cap of more than $1.6 billion as of Tuesday, and all have strategies to expand or restructure for continued growth.

1. COACH INC.
Market capitalization: $13.7 billion
Over the past few years, Coach has been on a tear with store openings and product launches. As a result, the company’s shares have been on the rise, as well: The stock is up 33 percent from a year ago. In November, Coach unveiled its redesigned and expanded flagship at 595 Madison Avenue at the corner of East 57th Street here, which, at 10,000 square feet, is its largest anywhere. There are currently more than 300 Coach stores in the U.S., with more expected. In order to reach an even wider audience, the company’s long-term strategic plan is to target international consumers, with an emphasis on Japanese customers. For the three months ended Dec. 31, direct-to-consumer sales, which now include Coach Japan, rose 21 percent to $504 million from $416 million. Sales rose 22.3 percent to $650.3 million from $531.8 million. Coach’s total sales in the last fiscal year were $1.7 billion.

2. AVON PRODUCTS INC.
Market capitalization: $12.6 billion
Though Avon’s recent fourth-quarter profit fell almost 37 percent, the beauty company is still one of the biggest names in the industry — it is also in the midst of a major makeover. Citing restructuring initiatives, including halving the number of management layers, chairman and chief executive officer Andrea Jung said during a conference call with Wall Street analysts earlier this month that the focus will be on fortifying the company’s midtier brands, such as Avon Solution and Avon Color. Avon Solution will include antiaging technology, while Avon Color will receive a “360-degree brand makeover” this year. For the three months ended Dec. 31 revenues totaled $2.4 billion.

This story first appeared in the February 16, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

3. THE ESTEE LAUDER COS. INC.
Market capitalization: $8 billion
Founded in 1946, Estée Lauder has annual sales of $6.3 billion and consists of brands ranging from Clinique to Origins to Bumble and bumble. Estée Lauder said last month that net earnings from continuing operations for the second quarter ended Dec. 31 rose 8 percent to $150.4 million on a net sales gain of 3 percent to $1.78 billion. Including a charge associated with the company’s Stila business, which, as of Sept. 30, is recorded as a discontinued operation, net earnings fell nearly 41 percent to $81.7 million. William P. Lauder, president and chief executive officer, said in a statement, “We continue to show progress on our strategic initiatives to drive strong top-line growth, provide further cost savings and generate significant and sustainable profit growth.”

4. POLO RALPH LAUREN CORP.
Market capitalization: $6 billion
In the past five years, sales and profits of Polo Ralph Lauren have doubled, and there are no signs of slowing growth. Polo, which signed a four-year deal last year with the United States Tennis Association to be the official apparel sponsor of the U.S. Open, has a number of growth plans in place, including expanding its luxury accessories offerings, building a global denim business and opening more retail stores worldwide. Earlier this month, the company posted third-quarter profits that jumped 20.9 percent. For the full year, though, Polo scaled back its profit outlook as it expects to take charges related to the acquisition of the Polo Jeans license from Jones Apparel Group. The company said it plans to take steps to improve the business over the long term.

5. TIFFANY & CO.
Market capitalization: $5.2 billion
In December, Tiffany reported a 37 percent jump in third-quarter net profits because of higher gross margins and a jump in consolidated same-store sales. The company, however, had a weaker-than-expected gain in net sales, partially due to ongoing — though improved — weakness in Japan. The $2.2 billion company also said it plans to roll out jewelry in some of its stores that will be designed by architect Frank Gehry. At the end of last month, WWD reported that Tiffany decided to end its stockholder rights plan — the so-called “poison pill” companies typically use to prevent a takeover from an unwanted suitor — which has led to speculation the luxury jeweler might be for sale.

6. LIZ CLAIBORNE INC.
Market capitalization: $3.8 billion
With more than 35 apparel and accessories brands, Liz Claiborne is a dominant player in the fashion industry, and is constantly making strides to offer more. Early this month, the $4.6 billion company announced plans to streamline its operations and, as a result, will eliminate 500 positions and reevaluate about 20 retail locations. Paul Charron, chairman and chief executive officer of the firm, said the moves will help the company be more efficient in managing its current portfolio and allow for more growth opportunities. WWD reported last month that the company is interested in expanding further in the activewear market after its acquisition of the Prana brand.

7. FOOT LOCKER INC.
Market capitalization: $3.6 billion
As the number-one retailer of athletic footwear and apparel, Foot Locker reported this month a 5.5 percent increase in sales to $5.6 billion this past year. The company operates about 3,900 stores around the world, and continues to expand. With brand names Foot Locker, Foot Action, Lady Foot Locker, Kids Foot Locker and Champs Sports, as well as an online market, Foot Locker is able to reach consumers of all ages with fashionable activewear lines such as Puma and Sean John.

8. INTERNATIONAL FLAVORS & FRAGRANCES INC.
Market capitalization: $3.1 billion
Though IFF remains one of the largest companies in New York, it has been on a slide as of late. The company reported last month that fourth-quarter net earnings were down 63 percent to $15.2 million. The results included an aftertax charge related to IFF’s elimination of 300 jobs in the company’s European and North American regions. As a leading creator of flavors and fragrances, IFF produces fragrances used for manufacturing perfumes, cosmetics and soaps. The company produces scents for designer brands such as Hugo Boss, Ralph Lauren, Estée Lauder and Salvatore Ferragamo, including “Incanto Charms” (seen to the left). Located in 31 countries, the company also manufactures products for the beverage and food industry and home product lines.

9. ANN TAYLOR STORES CORP.
Market capitalization: $2.5 billion
The $2 billion apparel firm offers affordable fashion through its three divisions: Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Loft and Ann Taylor Factory. In all, Ann Taylor consists of approximately 808 stores in 46 states. The chain launched a special-occasion line of dresses and accessories, called Ann Taylor Celebrations, last month, hitting 18 stores and its Web site. And in October, the corporation began to sell online, which helped boost Ann Taylor’s net sales for the third quarter of fiscal 2005 to $514 million, up 11.6 percent from $460 million for the same period last year.

10. AEROPOSTALE INC.
Market capitalization: $1.6 billion
A success story if there ever was one, this company has been able to increase sales year after year in the face of fierce competition from retailers such as Abercrombie & Fitch and American Eagle. Aéropostale, which opened its first store in 1987, has grown to 610 units in 47 states and is unique in the fact that it designs, markets and sells all its merchandise to an 11- to 18-year old dual-gender target market. Known for its “fashionably casual” apparel and accessories, the company reported more than $1 billion in sales for last year, a figure that is sure to increase when it starts selling online this summer.

Source: original reporting by wwd; Yahoo Finance; all market cap figures as of feb. 14

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