Revlon CEO on gains from digital transformation efforts

Revlon CEO Debbie Perelman announced that the company will be enhancing its digital transformation efforts.
Revlon CIO on digital transformation
Chau Banks is chief technology officer at Revlon, responsible for the strategic direction for all aspects of the company’s global technology organization. Chau Banks is responsible for providing direction for the technology organization and also the integration of business channels that reach all customer touch points.

Revlon’s e-commerce sales in the fourth quarter grew 46 percent and represented 9 percent of total sales for the quarter. Revlon’s e-commerce sales now constitute 6 percent of company sales in 2018.

“We are seeing growth with our retailer.com partners globally with our e-commerce pure-play partners and with our own D2C e-commerce sites. As an example, elizabetharden.com in the U.S. grew 84 percent in the fourth quarter,” Debbie Perelman said.

Sales during Singles Day in China grew approximately 90 percent. Sales during Black Friday in the US rose 154 percent.

Elizabeth Arden, one of its iconic brands, reported sales of $156 million, an increase of 21 percent, in the fourth quarter, fuelled by growth in e-commerce. Revlon generated sales of $0.5 billion from Elizabeth Arden in 2018 for the first time since the 2016 acquisition.

Revlon’s China business revenue grew 56 percent thanks to growth in both retail shops and e-commerce channels.

Revlon CEO Debbie Perelman said its digital strategy started in 2018 is working. “We focus on growing our e-commerce sales by partnering closely with our e-tailers and ensuring our products are available where and when the consumer is shopping,” Debbie Perelman said during an analyst meeting recently.

Revlon’s own D2C e-commerce sites include elizabetharden.com both in the U.S. and UK, americancrew.com and juicycouturebeauty.com.

Revlon increased spending on building its internal capabilities to create content to keep its brands and products top of mind with the target consumers.

“This includes the creation and integration of Red House, which has generated considerable savings across our brand support spend, the addition of social teams embedded within our brand marketing teams and back-end infrastructure upgrades to support our digital growth,” Debbie Perelman said.

Revlon’s total sales dropped 5.7 percent to $742 million for the fourth quarter of 2018. The cosmetics brand reported net loss of $70 million, an improvement of 9 percent versus prior year. Its adjusted EBITDA improved 13 percent for the quarter to $125 million compared to $111 million in the prior year quarter.

Revlon has achieved 65 percent increase in its operating income and 13 percent growth in adjusted EBITDA — driven by growth in key strategic areas including digital business. Revlon CFO Victoria Dolan is driving the company’s cost optimization program.

Rajani Baburajan

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