(Bloomberg) — Vegan beauty startup Thrive Causemetics is working with an adviser to explore options including a sale or public listing, according to people familiar with the matter, as cosmetic companies attract investment from major brands.
The Los Angeles-based is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and could be valued at several hundred millions of dollars in a potential transaction, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the information isn’t public.
The company, founded by entrepreneur Karissa Bodnar in 2015, is set to generate about $150 million in revenue this year with $20 million of annual earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, they said. Discussions are at an early stage and may not result in any deal.
Representatives for Thrive and Goldman Sachs declined to comment.
As stay-at-home orders have kept customers away from salons and stores, e-commerce sales of beauty products have at companies such as L’Oreal SA have increased in the high-double digits compared to a year ago, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Deborah Aitken. Skincare sales have also performed very well, she added.
“The lockdown has significantly raised the move to online shopping in beauty, with a notable upward shift among older women,” Aitken said.
Dealmaking in the space has been busy. Coty Inc. announced Monday a plan to buy 20% of Kim Kardashian West’s beauty line for $200 million, just months after taking a majority stake in Kylie Cosmetics, which was valued at $1.2 billion and founded by Kardashian’s half sister Kylie Jenner. Last month, beauty giant L’Oreal acquired U.S.-based skincare brand Thayers Natural Remedies.
Bodnar, Thrive’s chief executive officer and a former L’Oreal formula developer, founded it after her friend died of cancer at the age of 24, according to its website. The company partners with nonprofit organizations to help women who are fighting cancer and surviving domestic abuse, as well as homeless women and veterans. Thrive is backed by investors including Trinity Ventures, the venture capital firm’s website shows.
“Premium, niche, vegan and naturals are attracting higher rates of demand versus mass market brands, albeit from a lower base,” Aitken, the Bloomberg Intelligence analyst, added.
(Updates with new analyst comment in the fifth paragrah)
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