Before he acquired men's grooming line Baxter of California in 2000, Jean-Pierre Mastey worked in the fashion industry as a buyer for Japanese department stores. The LA native spoke with local blog LA, I'm Yours about the challenges of turning around the company, which he purchased from Baxter Finley himself. It involved changing the packaging, updating the logo and cutting out retailers who were't aligned with his vision for the brand such as beauty suppliers, gift shops and outlets. "I wanted to be in Barneys, I wanted to be in Fred Segal, I wanted to be in Collette, I wanted to be in Isetan: the path we were on was not going to lead me there. I made that sacrifice and cut out all the distribution, making a commitment to quality stores only."
Now Baxter of California is stocked in all of those stores and more, plus Mastey has his own barber shop Baxter Finley on La Cienega, which he describes as the face of the brand. As for the future, he reveals that he may add some new products to the Baxter line but there won't be any drastic change. "We're not going to complicate the grooming regiment for men."
· Baxter Finley [Official Site]
· Making More Than The California Man: An Interview With Jean-Pierre Mastey of Baxter of California And Baxter Finley [LA, I'm Yours]