L’Occitane’s billionaire owner to take firm private in $1.8 billion deal

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L’Occitane’s billionaire owner to take firm private in $1.8 billion deal

A L’Occitane International SA cosmetics store in central Paris, France, on July 31, 2023.

Benjamin Girette | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Hong Kong-listed L’Occitane International‘s chairman and controlling shareholder will take the French skin-care firm private, valuing it at a maximum of HK$13.91 billion (US$1.78 billion), the company said on Monday.

Reuters reported in early April that L’Occitane’s Chairman Reinold Geiger was in advanced talks with investors and lenders about the deal, with U.S. private equity giant Blackstone looking to provide debt financing to fund the deal.

As part of the deal, Austrian billionaire Geiger’s investment holding company L’Occitane Groupe in Luxembourg will pay HK$34 for each share not already owned, representing a 30.8% premium to the stock’s last close of HK$26 on Feb. 5.

L’Occitane Groupe owned 72.39% of the cosmetics company at March-end.

The investment holding firm does not intend to increase the offer price for the deal, which comes a few months after Geiger shelved a buyout attempt for the company.

L’Occitane International’s shares, which were halted on April 9, will resume trading on Tuesday.

J.P. Morgan will be the financial advisor for L’Occitane Groupe.

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