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Estée Lauder Companies, Inc.
Type Public group of companies
Founded New York City, New York, USA (1946)
Headquarters United States New York City, New York, USA
Key people Charlene Barshefsky, Rose Bravo, Lynn de Rothschild, Mellody Hobson, Irvine Hockaday, Aerin Lauder, Leonard Lauder, Ronald Lauder, William P. Lauder, Richard Parsons, Marshall Rose, Barry Sternlicht, Fabrizio Freda
Industry Cosmetics, Perfumes
Revenue US$7.32 Billion (FY 2009)[1]
Operating income US$418 Million (FY 2009)[1]
Net income US$218 Million (FY 2009)[1]
Total assets US$5.18 Billion (FY 2009) [2]
Total equity US$1.64 Billion (FY 2009)[2]
Employees 28,500

Estée Lauder Companies, Inc. is a US manufacturer and marketer of skin care, cosmetics, perfume and hair care products. The company has its headquarters in Midtown Manhattan, New York City.[3]



The company began in 1946 when Joseph Lauder and his wife Estée Lauder began producing cosmetics in New York City, New York. At first, they only had four products: Super-Rich All Purpose Creme, 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 started its first international account 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 herself was named one of ten Outstanding Women in Business in the United States by business and financial editors[citation needed]. 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's products became available in the Soviet Union.

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 had sometimes iconic spokesmodels, sometimes referred to simply as 'faces'. Past 'faces' for Estée Lauder include Karen Graham, Bruce Boxleitner, Shaun Casey, Willow Bay, Paulina Porizkova, Elizabeth Hurley, Carolyn Murphy, Anja Rubik, and actress Gwyneth Paltrow. As of 2008 the main spokesmodel for Estée Lauder is supermodel Hilary Rhoda.

As of 2010 Estée Lauder sells its products in department stores across the world and has a chain of freestanding retail outlets.


An outdoor poster appears at the Central, Hong Kong

Corporate governance

Current members of the Board of Directors of Estée Lauder Companies Inc. are: Charlene Barshefsky, Rose Marie Bravo, Lynn Frester de Rothschild, Fabrizio Freda, Paul J. Fribourg, Mellody Hobson, Irvine Hockaday, Aerin Lauder, Jane Lauder, Leonard Lauder, William P. Lauder, Richard Parsons, Barry Sternlicht and Richard F. Zannino.


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 became President and CEO.[4]

Breast cancer activist

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 created BCRF's signature pink ribbon.

Over $10 million was raised for The Breast Cancer Research Foundation between 1993 and summer 2003. Another $1 million was raised from their retail partners between July 2002 and summer 2003.[5]


Estée Lauder has a total of 27 brands which include:



QUIT activists outside Macy's San Francisco store on February 14, 2004. Banner says, "Killer Products from Estée Slaughter."

Since at least February, 2001, Estée Lauder and its brands have been the target of a boycott campaign. The boycott has been led by pro-Palestinian actvists who have targeted the corporation because of the pro-Israel activities of Ronald Lauder.[6][7] In June 2003, the San Francisco-based Queers Undermining Israeli Terrorism (QUIT) took up the boycott with their "Estee Slaughter" campaign.[8] The boycott has generated an anti-boycott campaign by supporters of Israel.[9]

Sandra Bernhard

Estée Lauder's boutique brand, M.A.C, aired an internet commercial starring M.A.C spokesperson Sandra Bernhard. Ms. Bernhard referred to theoretical individuals as "...little, freaked out, intimidated, frightened, right-wing Republican thin-lipped bitch" in this now infamous internet ad. Many Estee Lauder brand customers contacted the company to complain, asking that be removed and a public apology made. The company apologized for the ad, and the video was removed from the official site, although it is still available on YouTube.


  1. ^ a b c Estee Lauder Companies (EL) annual SEC income statement filing via Wikinvest
  2. ^ a b Estee Lauder Companies (EL) annual SEC balance sheet filing via Wikinvest
  3. ^ "Corporate Information." Estée Lauder Companies. Retrieved on February 29, 2010.
  4. ^ Women's Wear Daily, 9 November 2007
  5. ^ Summer 2003 BCRF newsletter: Estée Lauder Companies Update, from Internet archive
  6. ^ "Boycott Israel Campaign". Retrieved 2006-08-06. 
  7. ^ "American Muslims for Jerusalem have called for a boycott of Estee Lauder products". Snopes. Retrieved 2006-08-06. 
  8. ^ "Queers Undermining Israeli Terrorism". Retrieved 2006-08-06. 
  9. ^ "Armchair Activist: Buy Estee Lauder Products". May 11, 2001. Archived from the original on 2002-06-07. Retrieved 2006-08-06. 

External links

Coordinates: 40°45′49″N 73°58′22″W / 40.76361°N 73.97278°W / 40.76361; -73.97278

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