March 26, 2022
Cosmetics group L’Occitane International has announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Grown Alchemist, a comprehensive Australian cosmetics brand founded in Melbourne in 2008. Grown Alchemist’s founders are Jeremy and Keston Muijs will retain control of the operation, while L’Occitane will strengthen the brand through its industry expertise, while specifically targeting Generation Y and Z consumers.
L’Occitane International intends to become the leading global multi-brand player in this sector and its strategy is to gradually expand its portfolio by acquiring both emerging and established brands. Grown Alchemist’s attention to health issues is believed to have prompted L’Occitane to invest in the brand, as a vehicle for the group to get closer to the younger generation of consumers who are sensitive to health and ethical concerns.
“We are delighted to support and grow this revolutionary brand of natural makeup products that embodies the entrepreneurial spirit of our team,” said André Hoffmann, Vice President and CEO of L’Occitane International. “With a history as a unique, inspiring brand and an international fan base, Grown Alchemist is poised to expand overseas and enjoy a rapid pace of growth,” he added.
Grown Alchemist’s product line includes facial, body care and hair care products. The brand relies on a team of expert chemists based in Australia, as well as in London, Paris, Switzerland and Spain. In November 2020, Grown Alchemist opened a flagship store in Melbourne.
Grown Alchemist adds to L’Occitane International’s extensive brand portfolio, which includes Melvita, Erborian, Limelife by Alcone, Elemis, Sol de Janeiro and L’Occitane en Provence. The group has been hit hard by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. For the financial year ending at the end of March 2021, L’Occitane International recorded net sales of €1.53 billion, down from €1.64 billion a year earlier and net income of 220.2. million euros.
At the height of the crisis, L’Occitane International was forced to close 75% of total 1,569 stores worldwide, distributed in over 60 countries. In October 2020, the group, which is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, announced a restructuring plan that would involve laying off around 300 of its 9,000 employees worldwide.
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