Procter & Gamble plans to sell some fragrance lines No job loss foreseen at Hunt Valley unit


June 21, 1996|By Jay Hancock | Jay Hancock,SUN STAFF

Procter & Gamble Co. said yesterday that it will try to sell a few smaller fragrance lines managed from its Hunt Valley cosmetics headquarters so it can concentrate on its flagship Giorgio, Hugo Boss and Laura Biagiotti perfumes.

A sale wouldn't reduce Hunt Valley's employment of 1,600, said spokeswoman Kimberly L. Stewart. About a dozen people in finance or marketing for the brands will be shifted to P&G's cosmetics business, she said.

The perfumes to be sold are NaVy, NaVy for Men, Jaclyn Smith's California, California for Men, Incognito, Le Jardin and Toujours Moi. All are produced by outside contractors in other parts of the country, Stewart said, so production here won't be affected.

"It's a tiny business for us," she said. "This is part of a bigger program that P&G is doing to divest minor brands. Our plan is to try to sell them as one unit."

All scents on the block are retailed in the so-called "mass" market -- drug, discount and grocery stores. P&G's remaining perfumes are "fine" fragrances sold through department stores, duty-free shops, boutiques and other upscale venues.

Stewart declined to disclose annual sales for the brands. But all of the minor lines that P&G is trying to sell -- 10 businesses in all -- make up less than half a percent of the Cincinnati-based company's $33 billion in annual revenue.

P&G's Cover Girl and Max Factor lines, based in Hunt Valley, make it the biggest mass cosmetic seller in the country. P&G doesn't intend to sell its Old Spice after shave and cologne lines -- mass fragrances that are part of its larger Old Spice line of deodorants and shaving cream.

Pub Date: 6/21/96

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