Tengram Capital Partners is a private equity firm specializing in consumer and retail companies. Laura Geller Beauty is among the group’s current investments, for instance. The $20m deal has already been approved by TerraVia’s board of directors, and pending the usual conditions is likely to close in Q3 of this year.
The investment signals a next phase in Algenist’s business: “Having started the brand with Jonathan and the TerraVia team back in 2011, I am thrilled to lead Algenist as its Chief Executive Officer at this exciting time in the brand's development,” Frederic Stoeckel, Algenist’s CEO, tells the press. “The partnership with Tengram and TerraVia will help continue to build upon the brand’s current momentum.”
TerraVia will remain focused on putting algae to work in the food and nutrition space, while Tengram will concentrate on personal care.
“We are enthusiastic about our partnership with Tengram as we work together to help Algenist achieve its extraordinary growth potential,” says Jonathan Wolfson, co-founder, chairman, and CEO of TerraVia, in a press release about the deal. “This partnership allows us to focus our captive commercial operations on foods and nutrition, while maintaining participation in Algenist’s future success and gaining access to Tengram’s expertise and leadership to participate in beauty and personal care opportunities commercializing our proprietary algae platform.”
Tengram will be exploring new ways to use the algae ingredient platform that already supports the Algenist brand. “As part of the agreement, Tengram and TerraVia have also agreed to create a partnership focused on identifying additional opportunities to utilize algae-based ingredients across all segments of the beauty industry,” according to the release—which goes on to say that “the partners will target Tengram-led opportunities to invest behind beauty and personal care brands that would benefit from the differentiated positioning and compelling science offered by TerraVia’s algae-based ingredients.”
Growing the brand
While TerraVia is all about algae, Algenist is gaining ground as a skin care and cosmetics brand of its own accord. “Algenist is a unique brand in the prestige skin care market, with a distinct positioning and unique and proprietary ingredients,” Richard Gersten, a partner at Tengram, observes.
“The recent bridge into color cosmetics leveraging the patented ingredient technology creates tremendous potential for the future growth of the brand,” he says.
“We are looking forward to working with the existing team and leveraging our beauty industry expertise to drive continued growth across all global markets. We are also excited about the broader partnership with TerraVia and believe that there are great opportunities to create value.”