L’Oréal is acquiring Aēsop from Natura &Co in a transaction that values Aēsop at an enterprise value of $2.525 billion. Previously reported suitors had included Shiseido and CVC Capital.
Of the news, Cyril Chapuy, president of L’Oréal Luxe, noted, "We have great confidence that Aēsop will join the L’Oréal Luxe Billionaire brands club and therefore contribute significantly to the growth of the division in the years to come.”
The brand was a highlight of Natura's Q4 2022 results, which touted Aēsop's successful entry in the China market, with initial performance above expectations. In the period, the brand recorded double-digit growth in constant currency, up 18.2%.
Aēsop is known for its sustainable formulations and currently operates around 400 points of sale across the Americas, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Asia, including the previously cited footprint in China.
The brand posted sales of $537 million in 2022.
Nicolas Hieronimus, CEO, L’Oréal Groupe, said, “I am very excited to welcome Aēsop and its teams to the L’Oréal Groupe family. Aēsop is the epitome of avant-garde beauty, whose products are not only made with great care and exceptional attention to detail; they are a superb combination of urbanity, hedonism and undeniable luxury. Aēsop taps into all of today’s ascending currents and L’Oréal will contribute to unleash its massive growth potential, notably in China and Travel retail.”
Chapuy added, “My team and I are thrilled to have Aēsop join the L’Oréal Luxe portfolio of iconic global brands. Aēsop holds a very unique positioning on the global luxury beauty market thanks to its design led brand essence, its highly efficacious and sensorial products as well as its customer-obsessed retail philosophy. We look forward to welcoming Aēsop’s CEO Michael O’Keeffe and his experienced and passionate teams to continue to grow together the brand’s remarkable potential, by carrying on cultivating its uniqueness and its values.”
Fábio Barbosa, CEO of Natura &Co, said, “The divestment of Aēsop marks a new development cycle for Natura &Co. With a strengthened financial structure and a deleveraged balance sheet, Natura &Co, exercising strict financial discipline, will be able to sharpen its focus on its strategic priorities, notably our investment plan in Latin America. We will also be able to concentrate on continuing to improve The Body Shop’s business and refocusing Avon International’s footprint. We are proud of the remarkable success of the Aēsop brand, and we are extremely grateful to all Aēsop’s associates, who contributed immensely not only to Aēsop’s success, but also to making Natura &Co what it is today. We are confident that Aēsop’s growth story will continue under the ownership of L’Oréal and wish Aēsop continued success in this new chapter.”