In 1989, Richard E. George and Terry Hanson founded
Ulta Salon, Cosmetics and Fragrance, Inc. They changed the company name to Ulta Beauty in 2017.
Today, there are 1,214 Ulta Beauty stores in the United States.
George had been President of Osco Drug, Inc. until 1989 when he left the company and began creating a business plan for Ulta. His plan was for a beauty business that would offer consumers both higher- and lower-end products. George and Hanson, along with other Osco executives who had joined them, raised $11.5 in venture capital and officially launched Ulta Salon, Cosmetics and Fragrance, Inc. in 1990.
With more than 25,000 products from 500 beauty brands, including their own private label, Ulta Beauty offers beauty products at every price point. Customers can also enjoy the full-service salons located in every store.
In 1996, Charles “Rick” Weber, another Osco veteran, was hired as Ulta Beauty’s Chief Financial Officer. In later years, Hanson became the company’s president.
In 1999, Lyn Kirby, previously of Sears Circle of Beauty, became the President and Chief Executive Officer and Weber became Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, and Chief Financial Officer.
In 2006, Weber left the company to become Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Rec Room Furniture and Games, Inc.
On October 25, 2007, the company became publicly traded
on the NASDAQ.
As a point of interest, Ulta Beauty employs over 35,000 associates, of which 88 percent are female. 
In 1994, Ulta eliminated drugstore items such as toothbrushes and refocused their inventory to include only beauty products.
Ulta’s store format includes a 950 square feet salon area with eight to ten stations. As a full treatment salon, it offers haircuts and coloring, skin treatments, facials, manicures, and professional makeup applications. Need your brows done? You can get that, too, at their Benefit Brow Bar which includes such services as brow arching and tinting, facial waxing and eyelash application.
The Ulta Beauty Charitable Foundation (UBCF), formed in 2016, supports the education and well-being of women and their families by partnering with the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF), Dress for Success and additional local charities. Since partnering with BCRF in 2009, Ulta Beauty has raised more than $22 million for breast cancer research.
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