A SIXTH SENSE FOR EXPANSION
The ambition for expansion began to show concrete results at the end of the 1950s. The spark was a picturesque letter that reached the Puig offices in Travessera de Gràcia on October 6, 1959, signed by a Spanish medical student at the University of Iowa named Fernando Aleu. Unable to find Agua Lavanda Puig in the United States, he asked the company if it would be possible to import a small quantity to be sold at a store frequented by university students.
Agua Lavanda Puig later appeared in department stores such as Saks, and a perfume, Diagonal, was created with Manuel Pertegaz. Through this experience in the United States Puig understood that in order to compete in international markets, Agua Lavanda Puig, or indeed any other product of Spanish origin, was not good
enough. They needed a recognizable brand name, and if possible, a French one.
Paco Rabanne's breakthrough came in 1966 when he caused a stir with a collection entitled “12 Unwearable Dresses in Contemporary Materials.” In 1968, Puig was established in Paris, reaching an agreement with Paco Rabanne to add his brand to the company. Launched in 1973, Paco Rabanne Pour Homme, a fresh fern-green scent, marked a new category in men's fragrances and propelled the business further; it was a rousing sales success for decades.