L’Occitane makes first move into Asia with acquisition of skin care range

By Andrew McDougall

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Subsidiary Brand

L’Occitane makes first move into Asia with acquisition of skin care range
L’Occitane has continued its strategy of driving future global growth with its first foray into the Asian skin care market with its acquisition of a stake in the premium brand, Erborian, which marks the Group’ first acquisition of a brand after its listing in Hong Kong.

Last month L’Occitane entered into an agreement with Symbiose Cosmetics France and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Symbiose Cosmetics Korea (the “Erborian business”) pursuant to which the company acquired a 50.14 per cent interest in the Erborian business.

Company first

The French cosmetics maker expects to raise its shareholding in Symbiose Cosmetics France subsequently to approximately 63 per cent after a capital increase reserved to the company with the remaining share jointly owned by Mrs. Katalin Berenyi and Mrs. Hojung Lee, its founders.

“This is an exciting time for us and marks the Group’s first skin care product range with an Asian heritage,”​ said Reinold Geiger, chairman and CEO of L’Occitane.

“Whereas some recent transactions in our industry have been speculative, I believe this deal is complementary to our existing business of focusing in the natural ingredient-based cosmetics space and provides the Group with a good opportunity to build upon our long term growth strategy with controlled investments.”

Expanding

L’Occitane believes that the acquisition will provide it with the flexibility to expand current network channels and diversify product categories for the Erborian brand, and to globalise the business in partnership with its founders, who will be leading this expansion.

Founders Berenyi and Lee commented, “We are pleased to embark on this partnership and journey with L’Occitane, and see an excellent fit between the two groups in terms of our brand identity and business philosophy.”

“We are confident that with L’Occitane’s strong global experience in managing premium brands and access to its global network, the Erborian brand is entering a new and exciting stage of development.”

Positive figures

The Erborian brand combines ancestral Korean medicinal science and high technology to produce its skin care range.

It has established its presence in more than 15 countries, and expects revenue to be approximately €2.5 million for its current financial year ending 31 August 2012.

L’Occitane meanwhile, announced net sales for the first quarter increased 18.8 per cent to €216.5 million as compared to the same period last year, with a strong contribution from exchange rates.

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