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02/23/2021

Estée Lauder to acquire beauty retailer Deciem in $1 billion deal

Marianne Wilson
Editor-in-Chief
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The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. has agreed to buy a majority stake in indie beauty brand Deciem Beauty Brand Group Inc.

Under the terms of the deal, Estee Lauder, which already owns a 29% stake in Deciem, is paying $1 billion to increase its position to 76% valuing the company at $2.2 billion. In three years, the beauty giant plans to acquire the rest of the company at a to-be-determined valuation.

Deciem bills itself as “the abnormal beauty company.” With six brands in its portfolio, including The Ordinary skincare line, it is part of a fast-growing movement advocating authenticity and full-ingredient transparency in beauty. The company challenges beauty convention with clinical-grade ingredients, lab-like packaging, budget-friendly prices and streamlined stores with inclusive messages. Its products are sold primarily through the company’s 32 freestanding stores (including eight in the U.S.) and e-commerce site and through partnership with select retailers, including Ulta Beauty and Sephora. 

“Over the last four years, we have built a truly special long-term partnership with the incredible Deciem team, and we are excited for what the future holds,” said Fabrizio Freda, president and CEO of The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. “Deciem is an exceptional company. Nicola [Nicola Kilner is the CEO of Deciem] and her team have built and cultivated authentic brands with highly effective, must-have products using a vertically integrated model, and have fostered a uniquely transparent and engaging communication style. The company’s hero products, desirable innovation, and digital- and consumer-first high-touch approach have been instrumental to its success.”