L'Oreal to Sell The Body Shop to Natura Cosméticos SA
Paris-based L'Oreal SA said Friday it has entered into exclusive talks to sell The Body Shop to Natura Cosméticos SA, after reviewing the strategic options for what has been its worst-performing business in recent years. Natura, Brazil's biggest cosmetics company, has made a firm offer that values The Body Shop at an enterprise value of 1 billion euros, L'Oreal said. The proposed deal is subject to regulatory approval in Brazil and the United States. "The ethical values and expertise of Natura make it the perfect new owner for The Body Shop to accelerate the rejuvenation of the brand and its future expansion," said Jeremy Schwartz, chairman and CEO of The Body Shop, in a statement. L'Oreal said it expects the proposed deal to close in 2017.
Total Retail's Take: The retail and beauty industry was waiting to see what L'Oreal was going to do with The Body Shop after the European makeup leader announced it was reviewing strategic alternatives for the brand. L'Oreal purchased The Body Shop in 2006 for 652.3 million pounds ($815.8 million) from Anita Roddick, who founded the company in 1976 with her husband, Gordon. The chain has since expanded to more than 60 countries, but has struggled in recent years amid tough competition and muted growth in its home market of the U.K.