In a shock move for the Australian cosmetics industry, the country’s leading professional makeup brand, Napoleon Perdis, has signed a deal to sell its products in Priceline Pharmacies – and has begun withdrawing from David Jones department stores.
Announcing the company’s new strategic direction, Napoleon Perdis marketing and communications director Peter Sintras said the partnership will “usher in an electrifying new era for beauty in Australia”.
“The unprecedented union [between the mass market retailer and a prestige beauty brand] is bound to set off a seismic chain reaction amongst industry peers but the real winner in this game-changing partnership is the Australian beauty consumer,” he said.
The brand’s move into Priceline will be heralded with “the shout-out-loud launch of an energised collection of brand new beauty products” with “accessible value price-points that will make a splash like none seen before in Australia’s beauty landscape”.
Currently the 25-year-old brand is available at 442 stockists – Napoleon Perdis concept stores, Myer, partner accounts (including 149 beauty salons) and David Jones – across Australia as well as at napoleonperdis.com.
Napoleon Perdis’ founder and chief creative officer, Napoleon Perdis, said the move into Priceline was “a wonderful opportunity” to “provide so many more customers with choice and empowerment to achieve their individually desired look and feel”.
“Priceline Pharmacy has a reputation as a beauty playground and my range and new products fit perfectly with people who are looking for that exceptional beauty experience in hundreds of locations,” he said.
“I love the assortment that it gives to women.
“I love that we’ll be able to offer our full line in its full flavour in an open-sell environment that the customer can customise to herself.”
He said the company’s move into Priceline was unlikely to have a negative impact on its beauty salon partners or any of its other stockists.
“I do not expect my move into Priceline to affect my other distributions because I’ve closed around 20 of my own concept stores down, so there are only around 60 now.
“There are 240 partner accounts that were not able to keep up with the newness of the brand and I’ve consolidated a number of other areas of the distribution so my network plan (Myer, Priceline, some partner accounts, Terry White) to service Australia is very tight.”
Likewise, Napoleon is confident that the move into Priceline will not affect the brand’s ‘prestige’ positioning.
“The move into Priceline is going to further enhance the current prestige positioning,” he said.
“There is no issue on price fight. Priceline are carving out a prestige category on their floors and Priceline are also making sure that their customer will now have choice from everything from the mass market, to prestige brands.
“While I was living in America for 12 years that is what Ulta did and it’s why I’ve been an initiator and an innovator – I believe that Priceline is the only retailer set to be able to become the Ulta in Australia.”
He said the brand’s decision to exit David Jones was part of its own “radical self-makeover process” which included “rationalising its department store distribution to one retailer only”.
“The exit from David Jones was a very hard, very difficult decision after many years of partnership because we index higher at Myer with youth and our business at Myer is double the size than it was with David Jones.”
He concluded that other Australian cosmetic companies are likely to follow his brand’s move into Priceline.
“I think industry peers are going to follow suit.
“But at the end of the day I think that what matters to me is what the customer thinks – my customer has always been the empress and I think she will be serviced better and we’ll be able to offer a full Napoleon Perdis flavour at Priceline.”