Hudson's Bay Company

Hudson's Bay Company
The 7 Virtues

The 7 Virtues

February 10, 2011 08:31 ET

Dragons' Den Deal With The 7 Virtues Empowers Through Legal Flowers Eaux de parfum Now Being Distributed at The Bay

TORONTO, ONTARIO and HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 10, 2011) -  

Editors Note: There is a photo and a video associated with this press release.

Last night millions of Canadians watched business woman and author, Barb Stegemann, appeal for the need for businesses to do trade with war torn nations as a way to build peace and security. Her company sources fair trade legal essential oils to make perfumes. Her pitch moved the Dragons. She got what she asked for - $75,000 for 15 per cent of her company, The 7 Virtues Beauty Inc.

Her investor, W. Brett Wilson, not only provided the much needed capital to help her realize her vision, but his mentorship has helped her gain access to a global network of like minded citizens.

"Barb's pitch in the Dragons' Den was emotional – it was empowering – it was captivating. You just can't help but fall in love with the concept of doing trade with war torn nations to lift others out of poverty and strife. I had to jump on board this woman's vision," says W. Brett Wilson. "Also, the air date was timely, making these fragrances that empower others the most ideal Valentine's Day present."

Since the taping of Dragons' Den in May of 2010, The 7 Virtues has grown rapidly. The company started with 1,000 bottles of the first fragrance – The 7 Virtues Afghanistan Orange Blossom Eau de Parfum – in Stegemann's garage. Now it produces a second fragrance – The 7 Virtues Noble Rose of Afghanistan Eau de Parfum – with a production of 10,000 bottles and distribution by The Bay, Canada's largest department store. Future fragrances from other countries are already in development with plans to expand into the United States in the next year.

"Our customers are not only looking for products that encompass exquisite quality, but brands that speak to a greater good and maintain a high level of social responsibility," says Shelley Rozenwald, the new Bay Vice President of Cosmetics. "As Canada's leading department store, it is our hope that this exciting Canadian success story empowers others to follow in Barb's inspirational footsteps."

Inspired by her best friend who was wounded in Afghanistan serving in the Canadian Forces, Stegemann set out to find a way to do something to support his mission. Continually researching and reading articles on Afghanistan she found a distillery in Jalalabad and reached out.

"I found an article on this brave man, Abdullah Arsala, who was working to provide legal alternative crops to the illegal poppy for his neighbours by converting the rose and orange crops into lucrative oils," says Stegemann. "When I read about him, I went to Ottawa, met with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and asked them to help me find him
so I could buy his legal oils to make perfume."

Stegemann then located Canadian Perfumer, Susanne Laing, and asked her to create the fragrance line from the oils sourced from Afghanistan. The two fragrances and her book, The 7 Virtues of a Philosopher Queen, are available at Bay stores in major cities throughout Canada with continued rollout throughout the year.

To find a city or store near you or to purchase online, visit www.the7virtues.com.

To view the Dragons' Den episode and learn more about The 7 Virtues and empowerment through legal flowers and oils, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7K9TUgGLRg.

Fast Facts:

  • History Television viewers named The 7 Virtues Noble Rose of Afghanistan Eau de Parfum for an episode to air in the fall of 2011 www.namethis.ca

  • The 7 Virtues Philanthropic Business Model/Work was recently nominated for a Manning Innovation Award www.manningawards.ca

  • Barb Stegemann was the first woman in Atlantic Canada to get a deal on the Dragons' Den

  • The 7 Virtues Afghanistan Orange Blossom Eau de Parfum is a light, joyous fragrance layered with freesia and jasmine. The 7 Virtues Noble Rose of Afghanistan Eau de Parfum is a spicy rose blend of hot peppercorn, clove and carnation.

  • A third unisex fragrance is currently under development, using the vetiver oil of Haiti, which will launch in time for celebration of Mother's Day and Father's Day in the Spring of 2011.

About The 7 Virtues

The 7 Virtues Beauty Inc.sources fair trade organic oils from countries around the world to produce our fragrance line. Our mission is to empower our neighbours through trade by showcasing their exquisite oils and to shine light on their stories. Two fragrances are currently available – The 7 Virtues Afghanistan Orange Blossom Eau de Parfum and The Noble Rose of Afghanistan Eau de Parfum – with distribution now at select Bay stores, Canada's leading department store. Founder, CEO, author and motivational speaker Barb Stegemann recently appeared on CBC's Dragons' Den. Visit www.the7virtues.com for more information. http://www.the7virtues.com

About The Bay

Hudson's Bay Company was incorporated in 1670 by a British royal charter under King Charles II. With an unrivalled 341-year history in Canada, Hudson's Bay Company is renowned for its historical role in the development of the nation. Today, The Bay is Canada's leading department store and has established a reputation for quality, service, and more than ever, for style. A world-class department store, The Bay offers well edited assortments of exclusive and popular fashion, beauty, home and accessory designers and brands. The stores are continually evolving to provide customers with new and exclusive merchandise, as well as customized services to set The Bay apart from any other retailer in Canada. The Bay operates 92 stores in 8 provinces across Canada as well as http://www.thebay.com, the company's online store.

To view the photo associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/DragaonsDen-7virtues.jpg.

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