Aurelius Buys The Body Shop From Natura for $260m

The Body Shop International, a renowned retail chain known for its ethical approach and cruelty-free products, is set to enter a new era as it has been acquired by the European private equity firm Aurelius from Natura & Co, a Brazilian company. This significant transaction is expected to be finalized next month, contingent upon the approval of relevant competition and regulatory authorities.

Transaction Snapshot

  • Deal value: $260 million, which includes an earn-out of $112 million
  • Deal type: Acquisition
  • Buyer: Aurelius.

Aurelius has obtained The Body Shop at a notably lower price compared to its previous acquisition. Natura &Co purchased The Body Shop from L'Oréal in 2017 for $1.04 billion. The valuation of the company was initially set at around $492 million by Morgan Stanley, appointed for the sale. However, the final sale price turned out to be significantly lower.

The Body Shop, headquartered in London, employs about 7,000 staff and operates in 89 markets. It owns over 900 company-owned stores in 20 countries and has partnerships with head franchisees operating approximately 1,600 franchised stores in 69 additional geographies. Since 2019, the company has been B-Corp certified, reflecting its commitment to ethical and cruelty-free products.

Aurelius, known for its expertise in complex transactions and operational improvements, aims to leverage its experience in the omni-channel retail and wholesale markets to revitalize The Body Shop. Despite a challenging retail environment, Aurelius sees a significant opportunity to re-energize the business, capitalizing on positive trends in the high-growth beauty market.

The acquisition of The Body Shop adds to Aurelius's portfolio of complex corporate carve-outs in Europe, including brands like Footasylum and LSG Sky Chefs (LSG Group), and the ownership of the UK's Lloyds Pharmacy group.

Ian Bickley, the recently-appointed CEO of The Body Shop, expressed enthusiasm about the new partnership with Aurelius, anticipating a new chapter of success and relevance for the global brand in evolving retail landscapes. The deal signifies a significant shift in the ownership and strategic direction of The Body Shop, marking a new phase in its storied history.

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