Estée Lauder & Joseph Lauder
Estée Lauder Companies, Inc. is one of the world's leading manufacturers and marketers of skin care, cosmetics, perfume and hair care products.
The company began in 1946, when Joseph Lauder and wife Estée Lauder began producing cosmetics in New York City, New York. At first, they only had four products: super rich all purpose cream, creme pack, cleansing oil and skin lotion. Two years later, they established their first department store account with Saks Fifth Avenue in New York.
Over the next fifteen years, they expanded the range and continued to sell their products in the United States. In 1960, the company went international. Its first international account was in the London department store Harrods. The following year, it opened an office in Hong Kong.
In 1964, they started Aramis Inc., which produced fragrances and grooming products for men. In 1967, Estée Lauder was rewarded for her efforts by being named one of ten Outstanding Women in Business in the United States by business and financial editors. This was followed by a Spirit of Achievement Award from Albert Einstein College of Medicine at Yeshiva University in 1968. In that year, the company expanded again, opening Clinique Laboratories, Inc. Clinique was the first dermatologist guided, allergy tested, fragrance free cosmetic brand created by Estée Lauder.
Estée Lauder's Clinique brand became the first women's cosmetic company to introduce a second line for men when, in 1976, they began a separate line called "Skin Supplies for Men". In 1981, the company achieved another breakthrough when their products became available in the Soviet Union.
Estée Lauder now sells its products in department stores across the world, as well as having a chain of freestanding retail outlets. It employs over 20,000 people, and in 2008, its sales topped $8 billion. In February 2004, the company's teen-oriented jane business was sold; in April 2006, the professional-quality Stila brand, which Estée Lauder purchased in 1999, was sold.
The company has been known for its sometimes iconic spokesmodels, sometimes referred to simply as 'faces'. Past 'faces' for Estée Lauder include Karen Graham, Bruce Boxleitner, Shaun Casey, Willow Bay and Paulina Porizkova. Currently, the public spokesmodels for Estée Lauder are actress Gwyneth Paltrow, supermodels Hilary Rhoda and Carolyn Murphy, and model Elizabeth Hurley.
Current members of the board of directors of Estée Lauder Companies Inc. are: Charlene Barshefsky, Rose Bravo, Lynn de Rothschild, Mellody Hobson, Irvine Hockaday, Aerin Lauder, Leonard Lauder, Jane Lauder, William P. Lauder, Richard Parsons, Marshall Rose, and Barry Sternlicht.
The company is still controlled by the Lauder family, which controls about 70% of voting shares, and Estée's son Leonard Lauder is Chairman Emeritus of the Board of Directors. William P. Lauder, a grandson, is Chairman of the Board and Executive Chairman. On July 1 2009, Fabrizio Freda becaume President and CEO.
The Estée Lauder Companies’ annual Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign involves all of the 18 brands that make up The Estée Lauder Companies. They collectively represent The Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s first and largest corporate supporter. Estée's daughter-in-law was the creator of BCRF's signature pink ribbon.
Over $10 million has been raised for The Breast Cancer Research Foundation since 1993. Another $1 million was raised from their retail partners since July 2002.