Tom Ford and Domenico De Sole, Gucci's former dream management and design team, have formed a new company, Tom Ford, and on Tuesday announced a collaboration with the Estee Lauder brand to create a line of Tom Ford beauty products.
The alliance with Ford marks the first time the Estee Lauder brand has partnered with an outside fashion designer and is the first big business initiative from John Demsey, who was appointed president of the Estee Lauder brand in January after serving as president of MAC cosmetics.
It is also a bold move by The Estee Lauder Companies to bolster its flagship brand, which has suffered from stagnant sales in recent years.
The collaboration is a multi-year deal involving two phases. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
In the first phase, Ford will create a Tom Ford for Estee Lauder line. A limited range of products will be available for the 2005 holiday season, with a more extensive collection due to debut in spring 2006.
For the second phase, Ford will launch a stand-alone Tom Ford beauty brand that will focus on fragrances and other products. These items will begin launching in fall 2006.
Demsey said the alliance between the Estee Lauder brand and Ford was a pairing of two icons that would "change the way the brand is perceived forever."