PARIS — Donna Karan, here this week to herald the European launch of Donna Karan New York, her signature fragrance, said she was fulfilling her “dream to be international.”
At a press conference on Tuesday, the designer detailed European distribution plans and revealed that she expects to launch her first men’s scent in the U.S. late this year, in time for Christmas selling.
“It will be revolutionary and very sexy,” she said.
Like the women’s fragrance, the bottle for the men’s scent will be designed by Karan’s husband, Stephan Weiss. No names for the product were mentioned.
As for the Donna Karan New York fragrance and bath and body line, European distribution will be handled by La Prairie SA.
Distribution will be extremely selective, “but it is not a confidential launch,” said Pierre Naulleau, managing director of La Prairie France. “The distribution in France is more or less that of La Prairie.”
The scent will bow in 350 doors in France this fall, as well as 790 doors in Germany, Austria, Belgium and Holland.
It will be rolled out to Italy, Spain and Portugal next year.
The fragrance was launched in April in the U.K., where it will continue to be sold exclusively at Harvey Nichols through the summer. Earlier this month, it was introduced in 70 doors in Switzerland, where La Prairie is based.
According to Naulleau, sales in France should top $1 million at wholesale this year. He projected a volume of $5 million for Europe overall.
Approximately $500,000 will be invested to promote the fragrance in the French market, Naulleau said, noting that the spending is modest and “not the volume of Calvin Klein.”
According to industry estimates, $5 million was spent on television, print and postering campaigns to back the French introductions of Klein’s Eternity and Eternity for Men last year. Those fragrances are sold in 900 doors in France.
Single and double-page print ads for the Karan scent will run in magazines and national newspapers throughout Europe in the fall.
The promotional strategy includes in-store sampling, window displays and mailings in certain markets, and the installation of gold-tinted Donna Karan “environments,” invoking her fashion, in selected doors.
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Naulleau said the subtle juice should appeal to French consumers because “it is totally different from American fragrances,” which he said tend to be overpowering.