BEAUTY CARE

Report: NYC department stores revamping beauty as competition heats up

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Several New York City department stores are making over their beauty departments in an effort to battle growing competition from specialty retailers, online retailers and even mass market retailers like Duane Reade’s chic Look Boutiques.

According to a New York Times article, Barneys New York, Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s Herald Square and Bergdorf Goodman have given their beauty sections a facelift.

For example, The New York Times reports that Saks Fifth Avenue has implemented open-plan counters to encourage shoppers to test fragrances themselves.

While such efforts may be gaining momentum, the reality is that this has been several years in the making. For example, Macy’s announced in 2010 the rollout of Impulse Beauty, a concept featuring an open-sell space of niche beauty brands to complement the traditional beauty counters in Macy’s stores across the country, as previously reported by Drug Store News. The section showcases boutique beauty brands, many of which had not previously been offered in Macy’s stores.

Around the same time, prestige cosmetics brand Clinique unveiled at its Lord & Taylor Fifth Avenue location a consumer-inspired concept that enables shoppers to also shop on their own.

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Consumers expected to spend $400 more this year than last for holidays

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Consumers are holiday shopping sooner and spending more this year due to a late Thanksgiving and shorter holiday shopping season, according to a new survey by American Express.

The latest American Express Spending and Saving Tracker indicates that shoppers will spend $1,260 this year — up $400 from last year — and 27% are already looking for deals and plan to finish before Dec. 1, from 24% last year. Thirty-seven percent expect to finish shopping the week before Christmas, compared with 33% last year.

"We’re seeing an increased intent to spend among consumers as we head into the critical holiday shopping season, suggesting strong enthusiasm for hitting the aisles this year," American Express SVP U.S. consumer lending products David Rabkin said. "This is good news for retailers who might be concerned that the shorter shopping season will impact their sales."

For the first time, Cyber Monday — when many consumers go online to look for deals — is beating out Black Friday as the most popular shopping day, with 55% of consumers looking online instead of fighting the crowds the day after Thanksgiving, compared with 39% last year; 52% plan to go shopping on Black Friday.

Top shopping destinations this year will include superstores, department stores — where 62% of people plan to shop, compared with 48% last year — small businesses and other mainstream retail stores. Sixty-six percent plan to take advantage of offers via social media sites, compared with 60% last year. Fifty-one percent will use their mobile devices to shop, up from 32% last year, while 25% plan to browse for gift ideas, and 20% will compare prices with barcode scanning apps.

 

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Inter Parfums to buy certain assets of Oscar de la Renta fragrance division, enters licensing deal

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Inter Parfums announced on Friday that its wholly-owned subsidiary Inter Parfums USA has entered into an agreement to acquire certain assets of the fragrance division of Oscar de la Renta.

Simultaneously, the firms entered into a worldwide and exclusive licensing agreement to create, produce and distribute perfumes and cosmetics under the Oscar de la Renta brand. Terms were not disclosed.

The acquisition is expected to be completed by Dec. 2, 2013, when Inter Parfums will take over production and distribution of the existing Oscar de la Renta fragrance collections, which have been operated in-house at Oscar de la Renta since 2009 when the firm terminated its license agreement with L’Oréal. Upon completion of the acquisition, Oscar de la Renta will no longer directly operate a fragrance and beauty division.

“Oscar de la Renta is an iconic brand in both the world of fashion and fragrance. While running the fragrance operation in-house, Oscar de la Renta has successfully reinstated the brand to its position at the height of luxury. Inter Parfums looks forward to building on that success by devoting our resources and know-how to expanding the Oscar de la Renta fragrance business around the world,” said Jean Madar, chairman and CEO of Inter Parfums.

 

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