The acquisition of Carver Korea gives Unilever greater market share in Asia, a stronger presence in luxury skin care, and ownership of a K-beauty brand at a time when Korean and Korean-inspired beauty is only just beginning to boom.
“We are delighted to be acquiring Carver Korea. It is an impressive business that is completely aligned to our Personal Care strategy,” Alan Jope, Unilever’s president of personal care says in a company media release about the newly announced deal.
“It will significantly strengthen our position in North Asia, the largest skincare market in the world; and will complement our existing portfolio, enabling us to offer luxury skincare products at attainable price points,” explains Jope.
And he believes the brand itself is poised for bigger and better things: “AHC has been strongly gaining popularity thanks to its efficacious, innovative and premium products; and it therefore offers great opportunities for growth.”
Chain of custody
Carver Korea was founded in 1999 and just last year Bain Capital Private Equity and Goldman Sachs together bought 60% of the company for $500m. Now, Unilever is taking it off their hands for $2.71bn.
“The contract…marks the largest merger and acquisition deal ever for a South Korean cosmetics firm,” as the Korea Herald reports. And this likely has a lot to do with the growth and development Carver Korea was able to achieve with the help of Bain and Goldman.
“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 for Bain Capital Private Equity, tells the press.
He goes on to add that, “Unilever is a strong partner to help the company in its next phase of growth and development.”