Brazilian beauty company, Natura, has announced the sale of its ethical beauty chain, The Body Shop, to private equity firm Aurelius Group for £207 million ($254 million). This marks Natura’s second major sale in 2023, as it previously divested luxury brand Aesop to L’Oréal. The sale of The Body Shop comes six years after Natura acquired it from L’Oréal for €1 billion.

According to the CEO of Natura &Co, the sale of The Body Shop is a significant move in unlocking value and allowing the company to focus on its core business in Latin America. This sale presents an opportunity for Aurelius Group to revitalize the renowned global beauty and personal care brand, which is well-known for its commitment to sustainability, social benefits, and animal welfare.

Headquartered in London, The Body Shop currently has around 7,000 employees and operates in 89 markets worldwide. It owns over 900 stores across 20 countries and has partnerships with franchisees who operate approximately 1,600 franchised stores in 69 additional geographies. Aurelius Group plans to optimize operations and expand the brand’s offerings through various sales channels, with a strong focus on omnichannel retail and wholesale markets.

Analysts predict that the new owner may face challenges, particularly in terms of broadening The Body Shop’s pricing structure and appealing to a wider audience in order to compete with value players and discounters. Despite these challenges, the brand performed well during the pandemic, reaching a peak market share of 1.4% in 2020. To reach a more diverse consumer base and capitalize on the ongoing demand for ethical and sustainable beauty products, analysts suggest that partnerships or concessions with other retailers may be a viable strategy.

Useful links:
Natura official website
The Body Shop official website