Rodan + Fields up for sale?

By Deanna Utroske contact

- Last updated on GMT

Rodan + Fields up for sale?

Related tags: Skin care, Mergers and acquisitions

The direct sales skin care brand and Wells Fargo are weighing the options, as the company eyes further expansion into international markets.

A sale of the company could bring as much as $800m, according to an article on wsj.com by Dana Mattioli and Gillian Tan.

The inside scoop
Rodan + Fields told The Journal “that it is working with Wells Fargo to assess potential options but said an outside investment isn’t imminent.”

The Journal spoke with undisclosed sources to report on the prospective sale, quoting “people familiar with the matter.”

Investing in beauty
Between acquisitions by large legacy brands and purchases by private equity groups, successful personal care and cosmetic companies are moving from the hands of entrepreneurs onto Wall Street portfolios.

2014 saw Estée Lauder make good on its merger and acquisition strategy with the purchase of businesses including Le Labo prestige fragrances, Rodin olio lusso, and Frédéric Malle. Also last year, L’Oréal acquired Carol’s Daughter and the NYX color cosmetics brand. Coty purchased Bourjois and Revlon picked up Colomer.

Global vision
Earlier this month Rodan + Fields launched in Canada​ as a first step toward making the direct sales brand a world-wide endeavour.  The move north “validates the foundational infrastructure that will enable us to effectively extend our business model beyond North American borders,​” Lori Bush, president and CEO, said in an announcement to the press.

Analysts have pointed to the direct sales model as a top trend in beauty for 2015. That, in combination with research that identifies anti-aging products (like those from the company) as the fastest growing segment of the Canadian skin care market, mean it’s likely that the company will meet its stated objective: “Rodan + Fields project to grow the business to several thousand Independent Consultants and Preferred Customers within the first year in Canada.”

Anti-aging strategy objectives
Rodan + Fields launched its latest product in January. ACUTE CARE skin care strips treat expression lines overnight. The strips promise to very nearly replicate in-office procedures with an at-home item (not a device).

The device is in the details – skin care strips are manufactured “with the precision of semi-conductor technology utilizing a robotic computerized liquid handling platform,” ​explains the company’s press release announcing the product launch. “Through this…hyaluronic acid and anti-aging peptides create super potent liquid micro cones that melt into a wrinkle.”

Who’s buying
It would make sense for a company looking to augment their existing product line with clinical skin care products to acquire the brand. And, it would also be wise for a competitor in the direct sales space to purchase Rodan + Fields. Though so far, no clear buyer has been named publically.

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