Max Factor to move to Md.


Procter & Gamble Co. said yesterday that it will move the headquarters of its recently acquired Max Factor brand lines to Hunt Valley from Los Angeles by March as part of the consumer products giant's plan to make the Baltimore suburb a strategic site for its U.S. cosmetic and fragrance business.

The Max Factor offices will be at 11050 York Road, sharing the same building with Noxell Corp. -- the maker of Cover Girl, Clarion and Navy perfume. P&G; purchased Noxell about 18 months ago.

James Schwartz, a Noxell spokesman, said that it was too soon to tell how many jobs the Max Factor move will create for Marylanders, but he said that Max Factor's headquarters at Revlon Inc. in Los Angeles employs about 125 people in finance, marketing, research and development, sales and administration.

Max Factor's key brands are the Max Factor, Maxi and Mary Quant cosmetic lines; the California and le Jardin fragrance lines; and SK-II, a leading skin treatment brand in Japan and other Far Eastern markets.

"It too early to discuss what specific changes we will need to make locally to manage the business, but we expect that employment will grow in Hunt Valley," Noxell President John A. Saxton said.

The Hunt Valley offices now employ about 1,500 people, Mr. Schwartz said. He added that P&G; will try to woo as many employees as possible from California to Maryland.

P&G; bought its way into the global cosmetics market in April with its $1.14 billion purchase of Revlon Inc.'s Max Factor brands and a German subsidiary. The acquisition of Max Factor was completed Wednesday.

The purchase will more than double P&G;'s revenue from cosmetics and fragrances. Max Factor's sales total about $600 million a year, while Betrix of Germany has annual sales of about $200 million. About 80 percent of the sales of Max Factor and Betrix are outside the United States.

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