October 10, 2019
Tokyo-based multinational personal care company Shiseido announced on October 8 that it will spend $845 million to acquire Drunk Elephant, the female-founded clean beauty brand that has become one of the fastest-growing prestige skincare companies in history, Forbes reported.
The business news outlet estimates that founder Tiffany Masterson, who will stay on with the brand under Shiseido as chief creative officer and president, will pocket roughly $120 million when the sale closes at the end of the year.
Drunk Elephant had net sales of close to $100 million last year. It’s been backed by San Francisco based private equity firm VMG since 2017. The brand first signaled it was open to an acquisition earlier this year, Forbes says.
Masterson founded Drunk Elephant in Houston in 2012 while she was a stay-at-home mom of four. With the help of a contract chemist, Masterson developed serums and creams formulated without what she deemed as the “suspicious six” ingredients: essential oils, drying alcohols, silicones, chemical sunscreens, fragrances, and sodium lauryl sulfate.
Drunk Elephant is now one of the top-selling brands at Sephora, its exclusive brick-and-mortar retailer.
“I don’t look at other brands. I don’t go into Sephora anymore,” Masterson told Forbes in 2017. “I don’t follow trends. I stay close to home and stay in my lane. I do what I need. I’m a consumer first.”
Research contact: @Forbes