Interview With STAN ARCHAMBAULT, Interparfums Luxury Brands (US) CEO

1. What are the key strategic initiatives that Interparfums is pursuing (at retail) this year?

The introduction of Montblanc Legend Spirit in the first half.  This new story in the Legend family is a great opportunity to capitalize on the success of the first line and develop Legend as a major franchise and significantly grow market share.

In September 2016, the key initiative will be the launch of the first new Coach fragrance developed by Interparfums while the brand [Coach] will be celebrating its 75th anniversary. The brand has an incredible awareness and reach in North America with about 450 directly operated stores and strong presence in Department Stores and Specialty retailers. This is a tremendous opportunity for the company in the US market.

2. What do you perceive as the top fragrance category challenges in the coming months?

Sustain market share with constant pressure from new launches. Additionally, there is a growing competition from the artisanal brands segment.   Their distribution is no longer limited to specialty stores and they continue to expand their real estate. We also have to adapt to the change of spending habits from the new Generation Z and Millennial customer. Finally, we cannot take our success for granted and must constantly reinvent ourselves through innovation, new programs, and new product categories.

3. How do you plan to make the Interparfums “point of difference” at retail this year?

We need to be creative and find new ways to engage with customers. We can no longer rely on traffic and need to make sure that we offer robust promotional and animation programs to attract customer’s attention. The key focus in 2016 will be customized in-store events (i.e. monograming/initialing events, sample dramming, etc.), merchandising brand enhancement, and social media customer engagement. We will also work on improving our online presence and offers. Additionally, the company is investing in a new platform – with a social media component- to interact with our in-store demonstration ambassadors so we can make sure that the brand message is clear and consistent.

4. How are you planning to exploit your unique portfolio of brands?

We will pursue investment in state-of-the-art product development and will not compromise on the quality of our products. Each line of the portfolio must be approached in a particular way depending on its strengths. We will continue analyzing the efficiency of our programs so they can be fine-tuned and improved. Our strength as a smaller player in the industry is our ability to react without layers of approvals. This is a major leverage that we must take advantage of.

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