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Elizabeth Arden, Kate Spade Ink Beauty Deal

The Kate Spade brand is headed into the fragrance market this fall, with Elizabeth Arden as its licensee.

The Kate Spade brand is headed into the fragrance market this fall, with Elizabeth Arden as its licensee.

The fashion company, now owned by Liz Claiborne, has signed a long-term global licensing agreement with Arden, which has held the global licensing rights to Liz Claiborne Inc.’s fragrance brand portfolio since May 2008. That portfolio also includes the Juicy Couture, Usher, Lucky Brand and Claiborne scent franchises.

“Kate Spade is a perfect addition to Elizabeth Arden’s portfolio,” Art Spiro, executive vice president, Global Fragrance Marketing for Elizabeth Arden, told WWD Tuesday. “It is a fresh American designer brand that doesn’t compete with other brands in our portfolio, and it is a brand that is very strong globally, with Asia, South America and Central America among the expanding distribution. We are proud to contribute to bringing the Kate Spade New York lifestyle to the next level, and we think this project is a beautiful evolution of what Deborah [Lloyd, creative director and co-president of Kate Spade New York] has done with this brand.”

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Liz Claiborne acquired the Kate Spade business in 2007, and it is run by Lloyd and chief operating officer Craig Leavitt.

Distribution for the Kate Spade fragrance line has not been finalized, although it is expected to mirror the distribution of sister brand Juicy Couture, whose fragrances are in about 1,800 specialty and department store doors in the U.S.

“Elizabeth Arden has a proven track record as a successful partner,” stated Leavitt. “Through our partnership with Elizabeth Arden, we’ll be able to bring another dimension of the Kate Spade New York brand to life.”

The first Kate Spade fragrance was produced by the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc. in May 2002, as the fruit of a deal signed in fall 1999. Lauder relinquished the license in 2004.

Kate Spade, founded in 1993 as a handbag company, has grown to include clothing, accessories, jewelry, shoes, eyewear, legwear, home and stationery, in addition to the planned fragrance.