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Brazilian owner considers putting The Body Shop up for sale


The Body Shop could be sold off
Natura is reviewing the sale of The Body Shop as part of a strategic review
// The Body Shop under review after Natura share price plunges over past year
// Natura also owns Avon and Aesop and is looking to slim down operations

Ethical-based beauty retailer The Body Shop could be put up for sale by its Brazilian owner as part of an overhaul of its health and cosmetics business.

Fabio Barbosa, boss of Sao Paulo-based Natura, launched a shake-up of the group upon joining in June.

With the company’s share price plunging by 70% the past year to an all-time low, he is looking to slim down the firm and is reviewing options according to The Mail on Sunday.

This could include selling off big-name brands, which also owns Natura, which owns Avon and upscale Aesop, could also be taken over by private equity.

One advisor said: “It’s not in a great position and going through a difficult time. They may sell something like The Body Shop or possibly go private.”

The review is understood to be at an early stage but sales at The Body Shop slumped 24% in the first half of the year to £310 million.

There are now concerns that as the cost of living crisis bites, high-end skincare groups will see sales suffer further, with the company launching initiatives to remain relevant.

READ MORE: ‘Challenging’ second quarter for The Body Shop owner

The Body Shop has 3,000 stores worldwide and more than 230 in the UK. It was founded in 1976 by entrepreneur Anita Roddick in her home town of Littlehampton, West Sussex.

Roddick’s vision was to set up an eco-friendly company with animal-free product testing and recyclable packaging long before going green was mainstream.

She sold The Body Shop, now headed by Maddie Smith, to French cosmetics giant L’Oreal in 2006 for £652 million and it was subsequently acquired by Natura in an £877 million deal in 2017.

Natura’s first-half sales fell by 10% in the first six months of 2022. While The Body Shop was hit by one-off costs as it exited Russia, Aesop saw sales rise 8%.

Natura said of the reports: “We don’t comment on market speculation, but in difficult conditions we are redesigning our structure and reviewing ways of working to be lighter and leaner.”

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