Associate Manager, Travel Retail

Kendo, a division of LVMH - San Francisco, CA3.3

Full-timeEstimated: $73,000 - $100,000 a year

Kendo Holdings, Inc. is a San Francisco-based beauty brand developer and wholesaler owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy - Louis Vuitton, the world’s largest luxury group. A play on the words “can do”, Kendo has become the hub of creativity and next generation beauty product development for global Sephora channels and selective retailers outside of Sephora.

Through original development, collaborations and acquisitions the Kendo stable of brands will always be creative, inspiring and innovative. A dynamic engine of speed, expertise and market-savvy, the Kendo team continues to redefine the beauty industry through great product, great storytelling, great retail and direct-to-consumer partnerships. This shows up in everything we do and in what we stand for:

  • ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT: We seek creative ways to get things done
  • PERSEVERANCE: We are moved by Winston Churchill’s words, ‘never, never, never give up’
  • GENEROSITY: The power of giving
  • STORYTELLING: Creating authentic stories to inspire
  • QUALITY OBSESSION: Our product quality is a reflection of ourselves
  • FUN: Work, life, and fun are woven of a single fabric
The Kendo house of brands currently includes: Bite, Kat Von D, Marc Jacobs Beauty, Ole Henriksen and Fenty Beauty.


The Associate Manager role will be the first hire in the newly founded Travel Retail department supporting all Kendo brands. It is a highly entrepreneurial opportunity with exposure to many aspect of international duty free markets, travel retail and brand management.

In this role, you’ll be supporting the Head of Travel Retail in setting up the travel retail department for Kendo, supporting all brands in the portfolio. Driving communication between cross-functional teams, account management with international counter-parts and duty free operators, while executing market research and business analyses, will be the main daily responsibilities. However, no week will be the same for the first 6 to 12 months of this role while the organization is being established.

International, color cosmetic and/or travel retail experience is a plus, but not a necessity. The role will require a can-do attitude, highly entrepreneurial spirit and the willingness to wear many different heads and will be the main criteria for selecting the right candidate.


Account Management

  • Assist the Head of Travel Retail in daily account management and communication with international counter parts and duty free accounts
  • Lead cross-functional communication between Travel Retail department and International Brand Management teams of all Kendo brands
Global Travel Retail Strategy & Research

  • Assist in formulating global brand & product strategy, including:
  • Market and competitive research
  • Assess business opportunities
  • Map out Duty Free
  • Development of promotional or limited edition business opportunities
  • Adjust positioning of global launches to meet local market needs
Brand Strategy and Management for Travel Retail & Duty Free Markets

  • Develop short and long-term international brand strategies to exceed company objectives; work with cross-functional partners to successfully execute plans
  • Co-launch brand in new markets for long-term growth
  • Identify opportunity in existing market to drive growth
  • Understand and anticipate the needs of specific markets to adapt global brand strategies
  • Partner with inventory planning team to provide forecasts for each season and adjust forecasts as needed based on sales results in order to achieve business goals
  • Act as brand liaison for internal teams supporting international businesses e.g. visual merchandising, international marketing and education teams
  • Establish and maintain effective cross-functional relationships with both internal (inventory planning, education, creative, product development, international, and operations) and external partners
  • Maintain key business documents: promotional calendars, assortment master and product launch calendar
  • Prepare, support and lead meetings to facilitate effective communication (including calendared calls with local markets)
Merchandising & Assortment Planning

  • Manage market assortments to optimize sales and minimize liability
  • Partner with local markets and cross-functional partners to recommend a global brand vision for visual merchandising and ensure that seasonal merchandising updates remain on-brand while being flexible to local market needs and optimizing sales performance
Reporting & Research

  • Work with international counterparts and operators to provide monthly executive sales recaps, key initiatives performance and ad-hoc reporting and analysis, as needed
  • Research competitive and product benchmark in order to identify product opportunities and trends and make recommendations to drive the business

  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • 3+ years of related business experience, color cosmetics experience preferred but not required
  • Previous exposure to international (beauty) markets and/or working in Travel Retail a strong plus
  • Must demonstrate strong strategic, creative, interpersonal, organizational, and communication skills
  • Thrives on an environment that is fast-paced, rapidly changing, and customer service-oriented
  • Able to handle multiple priorities and work within matrixed organization
  • Highest levels of professionalism at all times, calm under pressure
  • Team player
  • Project management experience a strong plus
  • Strong PowerPoint and Excel skills
  • Ability to travel up to twice a year