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Cereus Pour Homme, which features four scents numbered 4, 5, 7 and 11, is marketed by a three-year-old private label branding and product development firm, also called Cereus.
Bill Rosenbaum, who is president of Santa Ana, Calif.-based Cereus, noted that Cereus Pour Homme represents the first time the firm has launched its own products. Two years ago, Cereus, which works with two "significant" retailers, according to Rosenbaum, launched a private label line for one of its retailer clients and is currently developing another private label collection for the other client.
Rosenbaum established Cereus in 2004 along with two business partners, Tina Klem and Maria Corbiscello. Previously, Rosenbaum had worked at retailers such as K-mart and Pacific Sunwear — and at Paul Stuart and Abercrombie & Fitch, where he oversaw the fragrance businesses.
The Cereus Pour Homme fragrances are intended to be "fresh, clean and sophisticated," he said, adding, "Our goal and message is high quality, not gimmicky."
The scents were initially launched at three Barneys New York locations in mid-November. Rosenbaum said he wanted a "soft launch" for Cereus Pour Homme prior to the holidays because the "preponderance of business is at holiday. Forty-one to 42 percent of annual sales [are generated] in the five weeks from Thanksgiving to Christmas."
In spring, he added, the plan is to begin a wider rollout of the scents to "better specialty [and] men's stores. There will be a push for spring," he said, adding he envisions the scent in 100 top-performing stores in large urban markets. He said he believes 300 doors in the U.S. could "support the brand."
While he acknowledged Cereus is "structured to be niche, our goal is to establish ourselves as a credible fragrance collection and then evolve from there, managing the business so it supports itself and grows organically."
Each of the Cereus Pour Homme scents comes in a 75-ml. bottle and is priced at $125. The brand targets affluent men aged 35 and older, those who buy Brioni or Canali suits, according to Rosenbaum.