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Ulta’s Mary Dillon talks about winning in beauty

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Ulta Beauty chief executive officer Mary Dillon shed some light on the specialty beauty chain’s winning retail formula in a recent segment on the “CBS This Morning” news program.

“We are all about all things beauty all in one place. And I think we’re onto something really special with Ulta Beauty because our guests love to shop this way,” Dillon told CBS. She added that a linchpin of Ulta’s appeal is that its beauty care offerings are presented in a “fun and inviting atmosphere.”

Ulta’s engaging shopping experience enables it to more than hold its own with online beauty sellers, according Dillon. “Our guests like to shop for beauty in person,” she said.

Also on the show, Dillon announced that Ulta plans to open its first Manhattan store next fall, to be located on the Upper East Side at 86th Street and Third Avenue.

Ulta is watched closely by chain drug and other mass retailers, which have been upgrading their own beauty offerings in recent years to create similar shopping experiences. And that’s with good reason, looking at Ulta’s financial results.

Through the nine months ended Oct. 31, Ulta’s sales climbed 23.3% year over year to more than $3.27 billion. The company ended the period with 949 stores — 42 opened in the fiscal 2016 third quarter – and total square footage of just over 10 million, up 10% from a year earlier.

Video courtesy of CBS This Morning.


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