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Birchbox CEO Katia Beauchamp Is Turning the Entire Beauty Industry Upside Down

9/29/15 6:00 AM EDT
Birchbox is taking the beauty industry by storm. Founded five years ago this month by Katia Beauchamp, a Harvard Business School graduate, the startup asks its 1 million plus subscribers to pay $10 a month for a box of product samples. For its men’s line, Birchbox charges $20 a month. And industry giants are taking notice. Sephora just announced plans to launch a similar subscription service, recognizing the growing popularity of ‘try before you buy.’ ‘I think it's really validating [to have Sephora enter the space],’ Beauchamp said in an interview. ‘It's a testament to the fact that the whole commerce landscape is changing, e-commerce is changing and it's very clear that there are going to be evolutions in how consumers want to shop.' Birchbox was one of the first e-commerce subscription companies. Other notable ones include BarkBox, a service that provides dog treats each month for $19-$29 and Julep, which offers nail polishes for $19.99 a month. ArtSnacks boasts full sized arts and crafts supplies for a monthly rate of $20. But Birchbox doesn’t just want to be known for product samples. It wants to upsell consumers, hoping they’ll purchase the full sized item from Birchbox instead of other beauty stores like Sephora and even Amazon (AMZN). ‘Our whole purpose is to get you to find the things you love - and buy them from us,’ she added. And that seems to be happening. Scott Gamm reports from New York for TheStreet’s new series ‘The Game Changers.’
Stocks in this video: AMZNULTA
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