While heads of private companies are often loath to discuss revenue figures, they often have a change of heart during periods of rapid growth.
Venice’s Dollar Shave Club is in the midst of such a boom.
When the e-commerce company launched two years ago, it vowed to upend the men’s shaving market dominated by big-name brands such as Gillette, which is owned by Cincinnati consumer products conglomerate Procter & Gamble Co.
If numbers are an indicator of success, then Dollar Shave Club’s founder and Chief Executive Michael Dubin has followed through on his promise, though there is still room for growth.
The company told the Business Journal last month that its October sales topped $7 million and that it occupies nearly 9 percent of the U.S. men’s razor cartridge market.
For its part, Procter & Gamble stated in an August annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it holds “over 20 percent of the male shavers market.”
Dubin also gave the keynote address during the recent TechFire Ignite Summit at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, where he proudly told the crowd that Dollar Shave Club would do $60 million in business this year.
And it seems Gillette has taken notice.
The company launched two-, three- and four-month subscription services earlier this year in which customers can choose between three different cartridge delivery options, ranging from $17.49 to $18.99 per shipment. Two of the packages come with four cartridges, while one includes five. Customers can choose to have the cartridges shipped to them directly from Gillette or through a number of other online retailers including Amazon.com Inc. and Target Corp.
Dollar Shave Club’s three cartridge subscription plans range from $1 to $9 a month. Like Gillette, two of those include four cartridges, while one includes five.
Gillette also launched a national television campaign to promote its new service in August, with recent spots airing during pro football games.
Dollar Shave Club, which has been running national commercials on cable outlets including ESPN, Spike TV and Comedy Central since early 2013, didn’t address the latest competition other than to point to its growth numbers.
Dollar Shave Club’s goal might have been to eliminate the hassle of waiting in line at retail stores to buy shaving cartridges, but Pasadena’s QLess aims to get rid of lines altogether.
Its mobile line management service is now deployed in hundreds of locations across five continents, according to founder and Chief Executive Alex Bäcker, including retail stores, government agencies, urgent care clinics and colleges. Local customers include the Los Angeles Community College District.
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