The Body Shop sold to Aurelius for £207m, with aims of “re-energising the business”

by | Nov 17, 2023

Global cosmetics group Natura & Co has sold British beauty brand The Body Shop in a £207m deal. New owners, private equity firm Aurelius, plan to ‘re-energise (the) iconic global beauty and personal care brand with impressive consumer recognition’ 

In an announcement made on November 14, Aurelius revealed its purchase of The Body Shop from Natura & Co in a deal set to close by the end of the year. The private equity firm purchased the high-street brand for a fifth of the price that it was acquired for back in 2018. 

‘Today, we celebrate a truly historic moment for The Body Shop as we join forces with Aurelius to begin a new chapter, allowing us to continue building the relevancy of this global brand for future generations,’ said Ian Bickley, CEO of The Body Shop, who assumed the role in April this year. 

Dame Anita Roddick, founder of the brand and sustainable trailblazer, initially sold the brand to L’Oréal in 2006 for £652m before it was passed to Natura in an £880m deal. 

Roddick launched the brand in 1976, pioneering an ethically sourced and naturally-based ingredient offering packaged in no-nonsense re-fillable bottles. A business model that was ahead of its time in formulation and distribution. 

Aurelius acquires a strong network of bricks and mortar stores, totalling 900 company-owned premises and 1,600 franchise stores in over 150 global markets. Recognising the high-street stronghold the brand has, the firm aims to double down on e-commerce opportunities.

The sale comes after a turbulent period for The Body Shop, which reported a 12% drop in sales in the previous quarter. 

Despite reinvigorating its stores and product offerings over the last five years, the brand has faced difficulty carving out a unique space in the market with several planet-focused brands coming out on top. 

Natura & Co is utilising the sale to re-focus its efforts on its eponymous brand and Avon, which is now its only portfolio brand. The multi-brand company also sold Australian brand Aesop in April 2023.

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