The Beauty Care industry witnessed a significant reduction in M&A volume in Q1’23, down 45% from Q1’22 and 47% from Q4’22. With only 16 transactions, Q1’23 fell short of pandemic-impacted Q3’20 and ranked as the lowest volume quarter in almost 10 years.
Despite lackluster volume, several high-profile Beauty Care M&A transactions occurred in Q1’23, highlighted by Procter & Gamble’s acquisition of Mielle Organics for $640 million, alongside private equity activity from key Beauty Care investors. Notable private equity transactions included the acquisition of Suave North America by Yellow Wood Partners and investments in Makeup by Mario by Provenance and Silas Capital and True Botanicals by NextWorld Evergreen. The quarter also witnessed strategics on the sell-side with the sale of Suave North America and Intuiskin by Unilever and nine dermatology brands by Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories.
Recession fears and uncertainty around consumer behavior created headwinds in the Beauty Care M&A markets in Q1’23. However, Intrepid believes much of the slowdown is related to supply rather than demand in the market. In other words, strong beauty brands are sitting on the sideline waiting for investor concerns to pass while demand remains resilient, particularly from beauty focused private equity groups that continue to be highly interested in investing in high-quality, fast-growing beauty brands and are still willing to pay premium multiples. Given these supply-demand dynamics, favorable underlying beauty care fundamentals, and the dearth of deals thus far in 2023, Intrepid believes there is a growing backlog of beauty care deals that will inevitably create a strong rebound in the Beauty Care M&A markets. The question remains whether we will see that rebound later in 2023 or we will have to wait until 2024.
Q1’23 Beauty Care M&A highlights include:
- Deal volume was down 45% from Q1’22 and down 47% from Q4’22.
- Strategic buyer activity was light but highlighted by Procter & Gamble’s acquisition of Mielle Organics.
- Strategic buyers were sellers in the quarter with divestments from Unilever and Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories.
- Private equity remained active with deals announced by Yellow Wood, Provenance, Silas Capital, NextWorld Evergreen, Carlyle, and Boathouse Capital.
- Continued consolidation and increasing M&A activity in the Beauty Care contract manufacturing and packaging sectors.
- Beauty care public market activity continued as Kenvue, Johnson & Johnson’s consumer health unit, filed for an IPO.