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L’Occitane bags ELEMIS for $900 million

by Arun Shirishkar

L’Occitane strengthens its portfolio by acquiring Britain’s best known luxury skincare brand, ELEMIS, in a whopping $900 million deal.

L’Occitane International S.A., the leading manufacturer and retailer of natural cosmetics with a portfolio of premium beauty brands,  announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire ELEMIS. The deal for the number one luxury British skincare brand has been settled for $900 million in cash.

A presitigious legacy
Founder-led since 1990, ELEMIS is a world leader in prestige skincare. It was launched in 1990 and is headquartered in London. Its products have cross-generational consumer appeal as they are quite popular amongst the Millennials, Gen X and Baby Boomer consumers. ELEMIS offers four award-winning skincare franchises that mirror the consumer journey. It also harnesses the power of the most efficacious natural ingredients and latest in scientific innovation.

ELEMIS capitalises on its five strategic distribution channels – digital, retail distribution, QVC, professional spa and maritime – to drive awareness, trial, conversion and retention across the omni-channel. It is available at over 1600 spas, salons, stores and multiple e-retailers worldwide. ELEMIS is being sold by Steiner Leisure Limited, a portfolio company of L Catterton, the largest and most global consumer-focused private equity firm.

New growth paths
Reinold Geiger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of L’OCCITANE said, “We are pleased to welcome the ELEMIS business, brand and people to the L’OCCITANE family. It is a major step forward for L’OCCITANE in building a leading portfolio of premium beauty brands. ELEMIS is well positioned for continued global growth due to the brand’s broad appeal, award-winning product portfolio, robust new product development pipeline and effective consumer-focused digital and brick-and-mortar distribution strategy. We have long admired ELEMIS for their commitment to natural ingredients and scientific innovation, and we look forward to utilising our expertise in the category to expand the brand’s footprint around the world.”

“We are thrilled to announce this agreement with L’OCCITANE, which will strengthen the continued growth and momentum behind our timeless brand and remarkably transformative products,” said Sean Harrington, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of ELEMIS. “Reinold Geiger has a strong history of developing and supporting brands like ours that are creating products sourced from nature and developed through cutting edge science and technology. With his inspiring and entrepreneurial leadership, I am confident that through this transaction, we can continue to realise our mission of delivering extraordinary products and experiences and grow ELEMIS into one of the leading skincare brands in the world.”

Mutual benefits
The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019. Jefferies and Nomura acted as financial advisors to ELEMIS, and Kirkland & Ellis served as legal advisor.

Marc Magliacano, Managing Partner of L Catterton’s Flagship Buyout Fund, said, “Over decades, ELEMIS has built an enduring and truly unique brand with powerful consumer appeal across generations, a relentless focus on innovation and an unwavering commitment to high quality sourced ingredients. Since partnering with Steiner Leisure in 2015, we have worked alongside ELEMIS’ talented management team to invest in its innovation capabilities, expand its product assortment and evolve its go-to-market strategy with the ultimate goal of appealing to a wider consumer audience. This transaction represents a terrific outcome for ELEMIS and L Catterton, and we are confident that ELEMIS will thrive and reach new heights in partnership with L’OCCITANE.”

“For over 25 years, ELEMIS co-founders Sean Harrington, Noella Gabriel and Oriele Frank have committed their life’s work to building a brand with the power to span across categories, geographies and generations. We at L Catterton are proud to have been partners with the founders on this remarkable journey over the past three years. We look forward to seeing ELEMIS continue to flourish with the global support of the L’OCCITANE Group for years to come,” said Avik Pramanik, Partner of L Catterton.

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