Corporate Sales: $6.2 billion
Beauty Sales: $2.9 billion (est., perfume and cosmetics)
Key Personnel: Alain Wertheimer and Gerard Wertheimer, co-owners; Alain Wertheimer, global chief executive officer; John Galantic, president, U.S. and chief operating officer.
Major Products/Brands: Chanel No. 5, Allure, Allure Homme, Coco, Coco Mademoiselle, Chance, No.19, Cristalle, Pour Monsieur, Antaeus, Egoïste, Les Exclusifs, Bleu de Chanel, Sublimage, Le Blanc, Hydra-Beauty, Rouge Coco, Le Vernis, Inimitable, Inimitable Intense, Les 4 Ombres, Vitalumière, Joues Contrastes.
New Products: Misia, Chanel No.5 Eau Pemiere, Chance Eau Vive, No.5 L’eau and Boy Chanel.
Comments: Chanel may be a fashion powerhouse but its couture fragrances, luxury skin care, treatment products and runway-ready seasonal color collections for eyes, lips and nails have a cult following among beauty consumers. Fiscally speaking though, in 2015, operating profits and revenues fell 22.7% and 16.9%, respectively. Sales of perfumes and cosmetics also reportedly sank 21%.
In April, Chanel sold its Bourjois brand to Coty for a reported 15.43 million shares of Coty’s Class A Common Stock—a deal valued at roughly $365 million (based on Coty’s stock price at the time of the deal), which also gave Chanel an estimated 4% interest in Coty’s mass market beauty powerhouse.
Last year Chanel added new iterations of a fragrance collection with the launch of Misia, Chanel No.5 Eau Premiere and Chance Eau Vive.
Chanel’s high-end, Les Exclusifs de Chanel fragrance range was broadened with the February launch of Misia, so named for Misia Sert, a trusted friend and muse of Coco Chanel. The powdery, floral juice is said to smell like the alluring scent of vintage, high-end makeup. Misia was the first fragrance developed by Perfumer Olivier Polge, who joined Chanel’s Fragrance Laboratory in 2013.
Launched in time for summer, Chanel No.5 Eau Premiere was a limited edition, a “younger and more modern version” of Chanel No.5. The lighter colored juice was presented in a new bottle housed in an outer carton that could be customized with a choice of 10 different graphic designs.
Chance Eau Vive is the latest edition to the successful Chance fragrance collection, which originated in 2003. This newest incarnation was launched in June and is available in 35-, 50- and 100ml EDT varieties.
In November, Chanel opened its first permanent beauty boutique in Paris. The 800-square-foot location at 40 Rue des Francs-Bourgeois in the Marais district was designed to be faithful to the spirit of Chanel’s founder Gabrielle Chanel and carries Chanel’s entire makeup, skin care, beauty and fragrance collection, as well as accessories. Company executives would not divulge revenue projections, but industry sources estimated the shop would generate first-year retail sales of $2.7 million.
News of Note in 2016
In June 2016, Chanel added a 17th fragrance to its Les Exclusifs collection with the fragrance, Boy Chanel. Developed by Olivier Polge, the scent is named for Arthur “Boy” Capel, Gabrielle Chanel’s lover and benefactor. Polge describes the fragrance not as unisex but as having more of a gender-bending duality; a masculine accord that is to be worn by women.
Polge also put his own personal stamp on Chanel’s classic No.5 fragrance with a launch of a new version of the iconic brand this past May. No.5 L’eau is billed as “paying tribute to the world’s most sold perfume with a contemporary olfactory approach.” The packaging remains true to the original bottle, and the new spokesmodel underscores the emphasis on youthfulness with the hire of 16-year old Lily Rose Depp, the daughter of Hollywood actor Johnny Depp.
At this year’s MakeUp in Paris panel, Isabelle Roatta, Chanel’s director of shopping projects, told the crowd that in their efforts toward sustainable packaging, Chanel has replaced all hazardous materials: “no PVC, opal glass with fluorine, and we use post-consumer materials whenever possible, as well as more abundant raw materials.” She also issued a challenge to potential packaging suppliers: “We [global brands] need to pool our needs—we need to go to a supplier [and ask] for a specific material to be developed.”