More than 100 new fragrances launched in 2015, with the requisite marketing budgets to back them up. Yet as companies shelled out some 20 percent of their revenues to promote their latest scents, it wasn't enough to move the needle on the industry's best-sellers.
Four of the top 5 sellers in the higher-end "prestige" women's fragrance market last year were created more than a decade earlier, including the then 94-year-old Chanel No. 5, according to a new report by A.T. Kearney.
The only fragrance that was new to the top-sellers list in 2015 was Marc Jacobs' Daisy, which was brought to market in 2007. Rounding out the top five were Coco Mademoiselle and Chance Eau Tendre, both by Chanel, and Dolce & Gabbana's Light Blue. None of those scents was released after 2003.
The top five men's fragrances have seen a little more movement, but have overall remained relatively steadfast. Armani Code and D&G Light Blue each rejoined the top-sellers list after a brief respite, while the three most popular fragrances — Acqua di Gio, Polo Red and Bleu de Chanel — retained their stake. Polo Red is the newest of these scents, having launched in 2013.
"Fragrance manufacturers are stuck in an expensive marketing cycle that rarely turns brands into new best-sellers," said A.T. Kearney partner Hana Ben-Shabat, who co-authored the report. The firm's research analyzed sales data from The NPD Group.