Shiseido’s Manheimer, Bloomingdale’s Gould Grace CEW Newsmaker Forum

Two beauty industry gurus—Bloomingdale’s chairman and CEO, Michael Gould, and Shisiedo Cosmetics America’s CEO, Heidi Manheimer—discussed “Strategies for Profitability” at a Cosmetic Executive Women (CEW) Newsmaker Forum on September 19.

In a panel led by CEW chairwoman and newly-named senior vice president of philosophy and Coty Prestige Skincare, Jill Scalamandre, Gould and Manheimer discussed creating and maintaining successful partnerships between retailers and brands, and how each of their respective companies has evolved in a digital marketplace.

Regarding the budding demographic of Millenial consumers and the emergence of e-commerce, Gould said that “everything has changed—though, as the Chinese proverb says, ‘Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.’”

“Rather than telling these consumers what we think they should purchase, we’ve had to shift towards asking, ‘What do you think?” Manheimer explained. “They want to be involved in every step of the process.”

While Generation Y shoppers are enormously influential, Gould still noted that “it is five times more expensive to garner a new customer than to nurture the customers we already have”—and thus a balance must be struck.

Both Gould and Manheimer also emphasized the importance of creating longstanding relationships at counter. ‘Omotenashi’ is the Japanese word for ‘hospitality’—and a key pillar of Shiseido’s retail strategy, Manheimer said. And though Japanese consumers may expect hour-long consultations at counter, American consumers expect the same services to last only 15 minutes.

“What makes any company special is its team,” Gould said, citing Bloomingdale’s emphasis on relationships, not transactions. And creating theater and building connections at counter resonates profoundly. “The more exciting it is in-store, the better the online business.”

Finally, each of the executives was asked about the legacy they hoped to leave behind. For his part, Gould hoped “to give people the opportunity to be more than they thought they could be. Because people gave me that opportunity.”

Manheimer shared that, “If I could know that I made a difference in someone’s life and left this world a little better than I found it, I’d be very happy.”


LVMH’s Pamela Baxter, Michael Gould of Bloomingdale’s and MAC’s Karen Buglisi. BPI’s Patrice Béliard, Shiseido’s Heidi Manheimer and Louis Desazars of NARS. Givaudan’s Cathy Torelli with Arcade’s Serge Jureidini and Diane Crecca (r.), Terry Darland of Dior and Cosmetic World’s George Ledes.
MAC’s Karen Buglisi and Paul Keenum with Christine Franklin of Shiseido. Clarins’ Jonathan Zrihen with LVMH’s Pamela Baxter and Cos Policastro of Givaudan. Gurwitch Products’ Claudia Poccia with Givaudan’s Kate Greene.
Linda Marshall of Elysée Scientific Cosmetics with HSN’s Anne Martin-Vachon and Laurie Dowley of Elizabeth Arden. Shiseido’s Lauren Hirschbach and Tomoko Yamagishi-Dressler with Coty’s Jacqueline Chan. Consultant Allison Slater Ray with Givaudan’s Cos Policastro and Lori Singer of Coty.
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DSM’s Paulo Rodrigues and Alexandre Rio (r.) with Cosmetic World’s George Ledes. Margaret Edelman of Main Street Consultants with Robertet’s Pierre Wulff and Sharon Osen of La Prairie. Susan Arnot Heaney, Robertet’s Pierre Wulff, Debra McDonough of Advantage Beauty Marketing and Barry Meisel of BMV Distribution.
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RPG’s Bruce Teitelbaum and Ellen Friedman with Sonia Kashuk of Sonia Kashuk Beauty. Laura Geller of Laura Geller Beauty with Ellen Greenwald of Gurwitch Products. Caroline Fabrigas of Scent Marketing Institute and Linda Marshall of Elysée Scientific Cosmetics.
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Mane’s Westly Morris with Cosmetic World’s George Ledes and Alan Beck of The Beauty Bridge. IFF’s Veronique Ferval with Arcade’s
Diane Crecca.
Firmenich’s Alexandra Palmer and
Roberto Olivi.
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IFF’s Lorenzo Cavallaro and Matt Frost. Shiseido’s Nicole Fleisher, Jessica Houghton, Judy Pham and Yee-Lynn Chen. Mark’s Maha Raouf, Gurwitch Products’ Claudia Poccia and Ellen Greenwald (2nd r.), Richard Recker of pH Advantage, Liz Forsyth of Albea and Laura Carey of Arkay.

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