Goop CEO Gwyneth Paltrow On Partnership With Sephora

CNBC Exclusive: CNBC Transcript: Goop Founder and CEO Gwyneth Paltrow Speaks with CNBC’s Julia Boorstin Today

Goop Founder and CEO Gwyneth Paltrow

Image source: CNBC Video Screenshot

WHEN: Today, Monday, January 6, 2020

WHERE: CNBC’s “Power Lunch

The following is the unofficial transcript of a CNBC EXCLUSIVE interview with Goop Founder and CEO Gwyneth Paltrow and CNBC’s Julia Boorstin on CNBC’s “Power Lunch” (M-F 2PM – 3PM) today, Monday, January 6th. The following is a link to video of the interview on CNBC.com:

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Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop announces first brick-and-mortar partnership with Sephora

All references must be sourced to CNBC.

CONTESSA BREWER: Hollywood royalty Gwyneth Paltrow announced she has a new show on Netflix, a wild docu-series that takes a deeper dive into her Goop business, the health and wellness company which is now worth $250 million. Our own Julia Boorstin is with Gwyneth Paltrow right now. Julia.

JULIA BOORSTIN: Contessa, thanks so much. That’s right. I’m joined now by the CEO of Goop, Gwyneth Paltrow. Gwyneth, thanks so much for talking to us today.

GWYNETH PALTROW: Thank you for coming.

JULIA BOORSTIN: So, we have a bunch of different pieces of news to discuss. But first, your first Netflix show, the trailer has gone viral. It shows you talking about everything from sex to psychics. How does this fit into your content and media plan?

GWYNETH PALTROW: Well, you know, we’re always trying to expand our footprint and expand our audience. And when the opportunity to do the show came up, we thought it was really an incredible manifestation of taking our content out to a different platform. You know, it’s off our channel and on this massive channel, which is Netflix. And, we’re just – we’re so excited about the show.

JULIA BOORSTIN: So, you, of course, have made many movies and you appeared on Glee, which is a network show. What made you decide to partner with Netflix, as opposed to one of the other streamers or even a cable channel?

GWYNETH PALTROW: You know, I think Netflix, the way that they think about content is, I think they’re very bold in their content creation. And I think that they understand the audience really well. And obviously they’ve been at it the longest so they have incredible data to understand, you know, what-- how you can kind of shape content, what the audience is, et cetera. They’re super sophisticated. They’re also really, really nice, cool people.

JULIA BOORSTIN: So, another big announcement for you today. You’re going to announce here on our air that you’re bringing your products to the mass market for the first time, with a partnership with Sephora. Tell us about the strategy and what you’re doing at Sephora.

GWYNETH PALTROW: Yeah. So, you know, I’ve always thought of Sephora as a real innovator in the beauty space, of course. And they’re the biggest retailer on the planet. But they do it with a lot of curation, and I think they’re so incredibly, beautifully customer-focused.

And we’ve been wrestling with the idea of if we should have a wholesale partner or if we should keep it all direct-to-consumer. And I think that when the Sephora opportunity presented itself, it was just too good of an opportunity, you know, to reach a new customer. I think we’ve been so defining in how we’ve articulated our clean beauty platform. And it’s something that Sephora has been, you know, very, very open with us about how they love, you know, what our platform is. So, I think it will be great partnership. And we hope to, you know, reach a whole new audience.

JULIA BOORSTIN: And so, your products, your beauty products, skin care products, are considered very high-end. They’re not inexpensive. How do you think of the sort of bringing it to the mass market? Does it mean there’s a broader audience? Will you be lowering the prices? Keeping them the same?

GWYNETH PALTROW: Well, it’s our wellness products and our beauty products. And there’s actually quite a big range of price points within them. I think, as we continue to grow and get more economies at scale, we always hope, we’re very price sensitive. Our raw ingredients are very, very high quality and expensive. There’s, you know, when you’re using a lot of plastics and synthetic, that’s how you’re able to keep the price really low. So, we’re aware of the customer and potential customer and our desire to really connect with that customer, that wants clean efficacious holistic beauty. And we want to be able to reach her. So, of course, we always are thinking about that.

JULIA BOORSTIN: Another announcement which you’re going to make later this week, but give us a little bit of a hint of it. You’re partnering with Celebrity Cruises to bring your events business on to a cruise ship.

GWYNETH PALTROW: That’s right. We’re going to test that out.

JULIA BOORSTIN: So, tell me about your events strategy in general. You’ve had thousands of women pay over $1,000 to have these in-person events. How does this fit into the broader picture of what Goop is and what you’re selling effectively?

GWYNETH PALTROW: Yeah. I mean, I think the thing we’ve noted most is our events have created such an amazing community and women who are really like-minded and want to get together to explore and be adventurous about themselves and their own lives and their external lives as well. So, we like to try to bring events to different cities and countries. And we thought it could be a really interesting opportunity to, you, know bring Goop to where the audience is in Spain or France and sort of test out a different events product.

JULIA BOORSTIN: So, you have events, you have commerce, you have content. What company do you see as your biggest competition or as an example of sort of a role model to what you’re trying to do here?

GWYNETH PALTROW: I mean I never think of us having direct competition. I do think that you know, most digitally native companies are now really experimenting in real life. And I think that you need that kind of completed loop of content and commerce and experiential to kind of touch the customer in a multipronged way. You know, it’s funny we’re just talking about Bob Iger before the cameras started rolling. But, you know, I’ve always looked at Disney as a company that has content at its core, with all these incredible lines of business coming out of the content. Obviously, we’re much different. We’re much, much smaller. Totally different demographic. But, I always look to Disney as kind of my north star of content as the driver of an important and impactful business.

JULIA BOORSTIN: But, so, as you grow the business, what’s your plan? Are you looking to sell it? Do you want to take it public?

GWYNETH PALTROW: Are you buying?

JULIA BOORSTIN: Not personally. But as of almost two years ago, your valuation was $250 million. So, what’s the big picture plan here?

GWYNETH PALTROW: You know, I’m just – I’m really focused on getting it to scale. This is really I think 2020 is really our year of optimizing. We have an incredible audience that comes. I think it’s really about conversion, it’s really about honing, how we do things from a digital product perspective, from an audience development perspective. And you know, we have a lot of way before we get it to scale. So, I’m not thinking about selling it yet.

JULIA BOORSTIN: But, Goop has not been without controversy. Over the years, you had a settlement about a jade egg. You have doctors criticizing you for the way you’re promoting alternative practices. How do you think about the controversy and how that’s changed your approach as you get into regulated things like vitamins and also as you figure out about how to maybe use that controversy to grow your audience?

GWYNETH PALTROW: Look, well, I think when we were a little start up and didn’t know about claims and regulatory issues and all, you know, we made a few mistakes back in the early days. But, you know, for over a year now, we’ve had an incredibly robust and brilliant science and regulatory team in-house. It’s led by an MIT scientist. And we’re very focused, of course, on, you know, backing up the things that we talk about with scientific claims when necessary or you know, being able to say like Hey, this is just for your entertainment. But it is really important. It’s like people say sometimes, we’ll talk about something and they’ll say that’s controversial.

But then in six months, it’s more widely adopted thing. And I think, you know, to generalize and say there’s been controversy around us I don’t think is quite fair, especially when you look at other businesses and some of the hot water they’ve gotten into along the way. Like we’re really just trying to move culture forward, especially as it comes to women. And I think the reason why goop has become as popular as it has become is because women feel large ignored when it comes to talking to their doctors about how they’re feeling.

So, they are wanting to kind of check out alternative ways of healing and having autonomy over their own health and their own selves and their own sexuality and their own relationships, whether it’s parenting or at work et cetera. And so, I think we feel really proud about the fact we’re blazing trails a little bit and that we changed the conversation and that people, you know, seem to follow suit.

JULIA BOORSTIN: And expanding your content now, you also have a vertical now for men as well.

GWYNETH PALTROW: We do.

JULIA BOORSTIN: So, just a final question about the Golden Globes last night: you of course presented and there was a lot of jabbing by Ricky Gervais the host both at the tech industry, some jokes at the expense of Apple as well as Facebook and also some jokes about Hollywood. What was the vibe in the room? What did you think?

GWYNETH PALTROW: I think the vibe, it felt pretty good. I mean, I thought he was pretty, you know, in comparison to other years, he was pretty tame. But I actually thought it was a nice, it was a nice vibe and I think he’s hilarious. That’s what he’s there to do. You know, he’s there to cause trouble and stoke that Northern, Southern California rivalry.

JULIA BOORSTIN: And which do you prefer? Acting or running a company?

GWYNETH PALTROW: Oh my goodness. What do you think?

JULIA BOORSTIN: I don’t know. You tell me.

GWYNETH PALTROW: Running a company. I much prefer it.

JULIA BOORSTIN: Great. Gwyneth Paltrow, thanks so much. Really appreciate you joining us. CEO of Goop. Guys, back to you.

CONTESSA BREWER: Wait a minute, Julia just to be a girl about this, what does she want to do with her dress now that it’s been all over the internet? That dress.

JULIA BOORSTIN: There are a lot of questions about your dress.

CONTESSA BREWER: Okay.

JULIA BOORSTIN: The designer, it was Fendi.

GWYNETH PALTROW: It was Fendi. BVLGARI jewelry. Christian Louboutin shoes. Ass by Tracy Anderson.

JULIA BOORSTIN: Thanks so much, Gwyneth. Yeah, a lot of kudos to your trainer.

GWYNETH PALTROW: A lot of help. A lot of help. Top to bottom.

JULIA BOORSTIN: Thank you. Guys, back over to you.



About the Author

Jacob Wolinsky
Jacob Wolinsky is the founder of ValueWalk.com, a popular value investing and hedge fund focused investment website. Prior to ValueWalk, Jacob was VP of Business Development at SumZero. Prior to SumZero, Jacob worked as an equity analyst first at a micro-cap focused private equity firm, followed by a stint at a smid cap focused research shop. Jacob lives with his wife and four kids in Passaic NJ. - Email: jacob(at)valuewalk.com - Twitter username: JacobWolinsky - Full Disclosure: I do not purchase any equities anymore to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest and because at times I may receive grey areas of insider information. I have a few existing holdings from years ago, but I have sold off most of the equities and now only purchase mutual funds and some ETFs. I also own a few grams of Gold and Silver