January 27, 2021

L’Occitane Files for Bankruptcy

News broke today that L’Occitane has filed for bankruptcy but don’t panic quite yet as the brand is still thriving in Internationally and this does not extend to Elemis. I hate to say it I’ve been sitting here waiting to see who would hit the chapter 11 button first. 2020 was a rough year and a lot of brands struggled to stay afloat. Beauty brands in particular are guilty of setting themselves up for failure with an endless round of releases that go on sale within weeks of launching. The overly saturated market makes for a hard sell when everyone is sitting around waiting for that next big sale. There is no value in limited edition releases anymore.

L’Occitane bankruptcy isn’t about poor sales though. Their problem is they are having issues maintaining the rent on their boutiques. This understandable as many L’Occitane Boutiques are in desirable locations especially here in Manhattan and with quarantine and lock down their store locations sales are suffering. Apparently L’Occitane has made efforts to address unmanageable store lease terms without success. By filing for Chapter 11 they hope right their issues with brick-and-mortar locations.

It’s hard to say if this will improve L’Occitane store front presence. At some point it may be a brand we see online only but for now this is their first step at righting their issues with physical locations.

“Today’s action is a pivotal step forward in achieving the full potential of L’Occitane’s U.S. business,” said Yann Tanini, managing director of L’Occitane North America. “Over the past year, we have moved aggressively to address Covid-related challenges head on, developing innovative new ways to connect with our community and continue to deliver the extraordinary L’Occitane beauty experience that our customers know and love, all while accelerating the essential transformation of our store footprint already underway. We look forward to working collaboratively with our landlords to achieve partnerships that make economic sense in this current retail environment and best position our marquee brand’s boutique offering for years to come.”

“Just like in L’Occitane’s other markets around the world, we look forward to continuing to serve our loyal clients here in the U.S. in our boutiques, online, and through our amazing team of passionate beauty advisors. As always, L’Occitane is focused on creating a delightful and personalized customer experience, and we will continue to develop innovative products with unique benefits. Our unwavering commitment to sustainability and ambition to make a positive impact in the world are stronger than ever. We appreciate the continued support of our employees, community, and partners, and we are excited about the bright future of our U.S. business.”

Regardless, of the filing, L’Occitane group which also includes brands like Elemis claims they have ample liquidity to support the brand and fulfill obligations to customers, supplies, and employees.

They actually have 166 locations within the US and plan on closing 23 of them which isn’t a lot at all considering the current pandemic. Last count they had 3,000 retail outlets in 90 countries.

So, yeah, no need to panic just yet. L’Occitane seems like they are in good shape for the future and the filing may fix some wrongs they are currently having.

I’ll keep you updated on the filing.

Which brands do you think will be having issues with sustainability this year?


About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • kimkats

    Aw, that’s too bad. Loccitane is a fun line (if pricey) and they do tend to situate themselves in high rent areas. There’s one in Omaha not far from where my momma lived that was in a pretty swanky shopping mall; I don’t even know if they’re still there. I haven’t been to O town much since momma passed, but we used to go in there when I’d go up and visit. Had good times there.

    And I didn’t know they owned Elemis!!! There’s a few Elemis things I really like, so glad to hear it’s not in danger. 🙂

    • Isabella Muse

      It’s really not as bad as it sounds! They are just sort of rearranging themselves so this filing isn’t completely bad! Yea, Elemis is part of the L’Occitane group! The company is private but they do own other brands!

  • kimkats

    Adding, I wonder how Merle Norman is doing, and if it’ll survive… I never used much from them, but it’s an old company and I kinda like seeing those hold their own in this day and age. It’d be sad to see them go by the wayside like so many others have….

    • Isabella Muse

      You bring up a very very interesting point! Brands like Merle Norma have pretty big cult followings and that could sustain them for many years but when their fans get older or this is morbid, if they die or something horrible like that, who carries on from there? Word of mouth can only go so far and Merle Norman is far from a hip brand so it’s not an easy sell to say your younger daughter, niece, or granddaughter! I will say this, Dianne Brill is sadly gone so, brands like Merle Norman maybe have a good chance of being ok for a while but who knows about the future?

  • MelodyJ

    I always liked the idea of this brand but it just doesn’t my budget. Any word on how Avon is doing. I just started back with them. I love the fmg Ink High-Gloss Lacquer and LYRD Artisan Cherry Vetiver Eau de Parfum.

    Also, I’m still reeling about Godiva. I went to a store New Years Eve and has to stand in line outside in the cold a good while. Only a limited number of customers at a time. I was shocked that they are closing all US stores. I know it’s food/drink and not beauty related but still that one hurt.

    • Isabella Muse

      Avon is constantly evolving and trying to re-invent themselves lol! Avon’s 135 years old which leads me to believe they’ll be just fine! About ten plus years ago they really upped their game and things slowed down when the beauty bubble broke. But they have a very loyal fan base that easily spans generations. It’s interesting with Avon as it’s a brand that people just “fondly” remember and I think it generates a lot of their sales. “I remember my mom wore this! I remember my aunt going through a catalog!” etc…It’s sort of a legacy thing. Now they are on their K-Beauty kick which is another interesting change! I think they have a good chance of surviving the pandemic and being well and dandy into the future! I’ll admit I’ll miss Godiva. It’s not gone forever or anything but I enjoyed going to the store! It was an experience!

      • Isabella Muse

        P.S. I think Yıldız may be experiencing problems overall so it might just be Godiva that sees change!

    • Isabella Muse

      LOL! As long as you buy them online you can have both but if you want to walk to the mall for them nope not happening 😀

  • Dee

    I’m glad they are in good shape because I love so many of their products and would hate to see them go away. So sad!

  • Ashley

    No!!!!! They make the best hand lotion & my favorite foot cream ever…like in the history of foot creams. Pricey, but so worth it.

  • MDW

    Before the pandemic some really nice independent brands got bought out by big guns competitors who then quietly phased out the brand.