Consumer
SE
has been acquired by
SE
  • Consumer
  • Sell-Side
  • Private Company Sale
  • Sweden
  • Jun 2018

Verdane acquires Nordicfeel and forms new online beauty giant for the Nordic market through merger with its portfolio company eleven

Livingstone’s Consumer sector and Media & Tech sector teams have acted as advisor to the owners of Nordicfeel in the sale to Verdane. The transaction is the result of selective sales process where Livingstone evaluated Nordicfeel’s strengths and outlined investment opportunities for a variety of buyer types.

eleven acquires and merges with Nordicfeel and forms one of the largest online beauty retailers in the Nordics. The new company will have a turnover of SEK 370 million, be active in three markets and have a total of 1.8 million customers. Both brands and websites will be kept as is, but a holding company will manage ecommerce platform development, logistic solutions and marketing.

The owners of Nordicfeel, its founders and the investment company MVI which has been a minority investor since 2012, is now divesting the company to eleven’s owner Verdane in a transaction consisting of equity and shares in the new company. Following the transaction, Nordicfeel’s founders remain as minority investors in the new company.

“We appreciated having Livingstone’s team on our side during this process. Thanks to great understanding for our business and impressive knowledge of the ecommerce segment in general, they were able to position the company wisely and work in a structured manner tailored to our needs,” says Daniel Nilsson, Partner at MVI.

The transaction is another in a long line during the last year, where well-established niche online retailers are acquired as part of building larger market players, or to broaden existing retailers’ offering to include new verticals. Ecommerce is growing rapidly and while the competition is already pressing, it’s expected to increase even further internationally.

“Notably we had interest for Nordicfeel not just from players in the beauty segment but also from other market verticals wishing to broaden their offering and also from offline retailers with a need to quickly establish a significant online presence. We are now seeing how ecommerce is reshaping the entire retail market and the importance of carefully considering how to position a company in preparation for a sale,” says Thomas Karlsson, Partner at Livingstone.

“The interest of niche online retailers is great and will only increase, since they have good opportunity to build a loyal customer base. These players have a higher ability to compete since they raise the entry barrier to the segment for new retailers. They also create the possibility to, in the long term, sell their own branded products, says Philip Golbraikh, Associate at Livingstone.

“Across the broader consumer space, we have seen a growing level of interest from international strategic buyers and financial investors looking to acquire or invest in leading market players across the Nordic region, particularly those with strong brands, a good financial track record and a growing online presence. We believe that this trend will continue as buyers and investors from across Continental Europe and the USA look to expand geographically and also extend their product ranges and technical capabilities,” says Simon Cope-Thompson, Partner at Livingstone.

Nordicfeel was founded in 2006 in Växjö, Sweden, and was one of the first Swedish online beauty retailers. The company has since grown to be one of the leading Nordic players, with operations in Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark.

eleven is one of Sweden’s oldest online beauty shops, with operations in Sweden, Finland and Norway. The company was founded in 2004 in Västervik, Sweden. Verdane has been a part owner of eleven since 2013.

The completion of this transaction reinforces Livingstone’s credentials in the ecommerce space following on from the sale of Gudrun Sjödén to RatosGolvpoolen to BygghemmaLong Tall Sally to TriStyleThe Cotswold Company to True Capital, and The Rug Company to Palamon.

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Testimonials

Daniel Nilsson, Partner at MVI

“We appreciated having Livingstone’s team on our side during this process. Thanks to great understanding for our business and impressive knowledge of the ecommerce segment in general, they were able to position the company wisely and work in a structured manner tailored to our needs.