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Artisan Perfumes for Form and Function

By: Leslie Benson
Posted: September 5, 2008, from the September 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.
Laurice Rahmé

Laurice Rahmé, CEO and founder of Bond No. 9

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Andy Warhol Silver Factory 2008’s Best Men’s Scent. Rahmé says she felt overwhelmed with excitement from the accolade, “especially about being up there next to the ‘big guys.’ ” The big name in fragrance suppliers, Givaudan, who worked with Rahmé on the award-winning fragrance, was flexible enough “not to stick Bond No. 9 in a mold,” she says, which is one quality she believes niche brands should search for in fragrance suppliers.

Rahmé’s “stick to your guns,” no-nonsense business philosophy keeps her niche marketing appeal on track. Bond No. 9 will continue to represent her beloved city, including in the brand’s recent collection, New York Beaches, which launched in summer 2008. “We always follow what the New Yorkers do,” says Rahmé. “When they go to the Hamptons for the summer, we follow, and so on. It’s different populations looking for different styles of fragrance and fashion.” Rahmé, who herself prefers to wear oriental notes, says she refuses to deviate from her vision of producing genderless, New York-inspired fragrances. “I’ve been approached by people who want me to make fragrances for other cities, but I won’t,” she says. “I believe in New York, so that’s what I’m sticking to.”