Remy Cointreau enters the perfume market at 5,500 euros per bottle

PARIS, Oct 21 (Reuters) – Known for its prized Louis XIII cognac, Remy Cointreau (RCOP.PA) is entering the luxury fragrance market with the launch of Maison Psyche, an exclusive perfume house that will sell fragrances starting at €5,500 per bottle.

The French spirits group will draw on its experience in blending and aging spirits, as well as marketing to high-end clientele, as it seeks to tap into wealthy consumers’ thirst for exclusivity.

The new business could be “potentially strategic,” Remy Cointreau CEO Eric Vallat told Reuters.

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The executive did not provide financial details but said it would start small, compared to the spirits group which has annual sales of around 1.3 billion euros.

“We have real ambitions. If this project works, others will follow,” Vallat said, noting that he sees the label as “a natural extension” of Remy Cointreau’s business.

The move comes as the luxury industry doubles down on serving wealthier customers who can still afford to splurge on high-end goods despite rising inflation.

The world’s largest luxury group LVMH has invested in luxury hospitality catering to high-end customers, opening five-star Cheval Blanc and Bulgari hotels in Paris, while recent expected-beating trading updates from brands such as Hermes, which sells $10,000 handbags, illustrate the resilience of higher-end labels.

The market for niche, high-end fragrances has also boomed, with strong appetite in the US in particular, leading to investments such as Puig’s purchase of Byredo.

Remy Cointreau’s Maison Psyche was born from the collaboration between Baptiste Loiseau, Remy Martin’s cellar master, and Sophie Labbe, head perfumer of the Swiss fragrance group Firmenich.

Maison Psyche’s first collection of five exclusive fragrances has spent time maturing in Cognac in western France in specially designed small oak barrels.

They will be sold in Baccarat crystal bottles, set in gold – some with diamonds, numbered and only available in very limited quantities.

Orders are already coming in, Vallat said, noting that the label would aim to serve wealthy customers who already buy the group’s Louis XIII cognac, its blend of eaux de vie aged up to a hundred years and priced at more than $3,000 a bottle on average .

Maison Psyche will sell its perfumes directly to consumers through meetings in special premises such as an exclusive apartment in Paris, with a plan to expand worldwide within six months, Vallat said.

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Reporting by Dominique Vidalon, additional reporting by Mimosa; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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