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July 05, 2017

World News

L’Oreal, Natura Sign Contract for Sale of The Body Shop

The exclusive talks between Sao Paolo, Brazil-based direct seller Natura Cosmeticos SA and L’Oréal SA for the sale of The Body Shop concluded last week with a signed contract between the two parties. The deal is reported to be for $1.1 billion (1 billion euros).

The French cosmetics giant bought The Body Shop more than a decade ago in a deal that valued it at 652 million pounds ($833 million). The lotions and soaps retailer, founded by British entrepreneur Anita Roddick in 1976, earned the reputation as an eco-friendly company. However, competition from other brands offering similar products based on natural ingredients with no animal testing caused the company’s operating profit to drop 38 percent to 33.8 million euros last year. L’Oréal confirmed in February that it was considering selling the brand.

The Body Shop has more than 3,000 stores in 66 countries. The proposed sale is subject to clearance by anti-trust authorities, notably in Brazil and in the United States, and expected to close during 2017.

Natura has also earned a reputation as an eco-friendly company. Founded in São Paulo in 1969 by Luiz Seabra, it is one of Brazil’s most valuable brands. In acquiring The Body Shop, Natura bolsters its international expansion. In 2013 the company purchased Australia’s Aesop for $70 million. Aesop has 261 locations in 20 countries.

Natura placed No. 9 in Direct Selling NewsGlobal 100 ranking, which recognizes the top direct selling companies in the world. The cosmetics giant had earnings of $2.26 billion for 2016.