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Profile: Hair to Stay—The Story of a Relaunch

By: Leslie Benson
Posted: May 1, 2008, from the May 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.
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Eugene Zeffren Profile

Collecting authentic Pink Floyd records may help some music fans slip into sentimentality, but what would happen if the band suddenly reunited and began recording new songs? The analogy is similar to what has the beauty world buzzing this spring. Hair care brand Salon Selectives, which reached popularity in the 1980s and 1990s, is back on store shelves with a new look and a new attitude.

Female consumers may feel nostalgic seeing the aromatic line of shampoos, conditioners and styling products at supermarkets and drugstores nationwide this year. Eugene Zeffren, former president of Helene Curtis and CEO of Chicago’s entrepreneurial company, SBB LLC, has researched, revamped and relaunched the brand, founded by Helene Curtis Inc. in 1987 and later acquired by Unilever in 1996. Members of the beauty industry could not have foreseen that Salon Selectives would be discontinued in 2004, only to return four years later—more poised than ever to tackle its retail competition.

But Zeffren and his colleagues did their homework and discovered that 80% of women are still fans of the products—kind of like the die-hard Floyd followers who would love to see the band perform again. So SBB, a company founded in 2007 that acquires and revitalizes undervalued brands in the personal care category, accepted the challenge to reintroduce Salon Selectives to the market.