São Paulo – Natura&Co and Nature Cosméticos announced this Tuesday, 14th, the signing of a binding agreement with Aurelius Investment Advisory for the sale of the chain The Body Shop. The deal is estimated at 207 million pounds (R$1.25 billion), to be paid within five years. A binding agreement indicates that the buyer has a firm commitment to closing the deal indicated in the contract.
According to Natura’s statement, completion of the transaction is expected to occur by December 31, 2023 and is subject to usual regulatory approvals. Aurelius, based in Germany, owns the Lloyds pharmacy chain in the United Kingdom.
“The sale transaction will support Natura&Co’s efforts to optimize its operations and simplify its business, as well as position it to focus on strategic priorities, especially the integration of Natura and Avon in Latin America, the direct sales model and the additional optimization of Avon’s international presence”, says the company, in a relevant fact sent to the Securities and Exchange Commission (CVM).
The Body Shop chain was purchased by Natura in 2017, in a deal worth 1 billion euros (something like R$3.6 billion at the time). At that time, the company already owned the Australian Aesop network, purchased in 2012 for around US$70 million. The plans were to set up a large international operation. The experience, however, ended up not being positive. This year, Natura already got rid of Aesop, sold to L’Óreal for US$2.5 billion.
Natura&Co executives highlighted that the announcement of the binding agreement for the sale of The Body Shop is part of the process of restructuring the company’s operations, to simplify its operation. “We continue on the journey of simplification,” said CEO Fábio Barbosa, during a conference call to present the third quarter results. “The sale of The Body Shop is in line with our strategies. This is an important step in boosting our business,” he added.
According to Barbosa, the sale of Aesop ended up being decisive for Natura to present a consolidated net profit of R$7.024 billion in the third quarter, reversing a scenario of net loss from the same period in 2022. “The sale of Aesop helps us return to net cash position”, commented Barbosa.