L’Oreal has acquired Australian luxury cosmetics brand Aesop from Brazil’s Natura & Co Holding for US$2.525 billion (A$3.7 billion).
Established in 1987 and headquartered in Melbourne, Aesop sells premium skin, hair and body care products through a global network of own-brand stores and third-party sellers.
Natura & Co acquired a 65 per cent interest in the brand in 2012 for US$71.6 million, and four years later bought the balance, suggesting a massive capital gain from the brand which expanded significantly under Natura’s ownership.
Aesop’s gross sales grew from US$28 million to $537 million between 2012 and 2022 as the retailer expanded into 29 markets, opened its first store in Mainland China and expanded into fragrances.
Nicolas Hieronimus, CEO of L’Oréal Group, described Aesop as the epitome of “avant-garde beauty”.
“Aesop taps into all of today’s ascending currents and L’Oréal will contribute to unleashing its massive growth potential, notably in China and travel retail.”
Michael O’Keefe, CEO of Aesop, said the brand will enter its next phase of development under L’Oréal.
“We will be able to bring our exceptional skincare products to even more people and continue to expand our brand globally.”
Fabio Barbosa, CEO of Natura &Co, said the divestment marks a “new development cycle” for the group as it shifts its priorities to its businesses in Latin America.