Unilever to acquire personal care company Carver Korea

Unilever enters K-beauty market with acquisition of Carver Korea for €2.27 billion

Unilever enters K-beauty market with acquisition of Carver Korea for €2.27 billion

"This has been a great opportunity for us to partner with a leading Korean company in an exciting segment of the cosmetics space and to help support its brand, operations and growth around the world", Ed Han, a managing director at Bain Capital, said in a statement.

The company co-headquartered in London and Rotterdam said it has agreed to buy Carver Korea, South Korea's third-largest cosmetics firm, from Bain Capital Private Equity, Goldman Sachs and the company's founder.

The contract also marks the largest merger and acquisition deal ever for a South Korean cosmetics firm.

The move towards the cosmetic and personal care sector has already seen the FTSE 100-listed giant acquire a number of beauty brands, including Dermalogica, Ren, Murad and Living Proof as they offer higher growth and profit margins, compared to its food brands. Carver, with sales of 321 million euros previous year, makes moisturizers, toners and sun protection creams.

"We are delighted to be acquiring Carver Korea", Alan Jope, Unilever President Personal Care said in a press release. The group's shares have added more than 17 percent to their value over the past year, and are up by just under 30 percent in the year-to-date.

Bain and Goldman Sachs had jointly bought around 60 per cent stake in Carver Korea a year ago for around $500 million.

Bain and Goldman Sachs jointly bought a roughly 60 per cent majority stake in Carver for around $500 million a year ago, a source familiar with the matter said on Monday.

The deal announced on Monday gives Unilever what it said is the fastest-growing skincare business in South Korea through its AHC brand of anti-ageing creams, moisturisers and other skin products.

Carver, which started out in 1999 selling products to beauty salons, reported sales of EUR321 million ($383.5 million) and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of EUR137 million in 2016. AHC's products also include moisturizers, toners and sun protection.

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