Emily Dalton and Curran Dandurand
Description: High-end men's grooming products
Start-up: $400,000 in 2000
Sales: 2003 projected sales of $5 million
Crossing Gender Lines: Dalton (l.) and Dandurand spent years in branding and marketing for makeup and skin-care giants and met while working at Mary Kay. They looked at the world of men's personal care and saw promise. "We knew there was a huge opportunity with men. A lot of big companies had tried to [launch] a line but failed to break through. [It had to be] a start-up company with fresh thinking," reasons Dandurand.
Tall, Dark and Simple: The partners did massive research to get inside the minds of men. Targeting "the guy's guy," Dalton reports: "He cares about how he looks. But he's not going to do a five-step skin-care regimen." To fulfill men's desire for simplicity, the entire Jack Black line is multifunctional, like the All-Over Wash for face, hair and body. Inspired by the package design of premium liquor and cigars, they created packaging that's distinctively masculine and alluringly familiar.
Delivered Male: Besides selling in Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue and at GetJackBlack.com, the co-founders get innovative by distributing to private country clubs, resorts and professional sports teams' locker rooms. Says Dalton, "We've been able to connect with guys in a way no brand has been able to do."