Yellow Wood Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm focused on investing in consumer brands and companies, has announced that its portfolio company Suave Brands has signed a binding offer to acquire the ChapStick brand from consumer health company Haleon. The transaction is intended to close in the first half of 2024 upon completion of customary closing and regulatory approvals.
ChapStick pioneered the lip care category in the 1880s with the launch of a now-iconic lip balm that made ChapStick a household name. For more than a century, ChapStick has added products to its portfolio with innovative new ingredients, skincare benefits, and flavors. Today, ChapStick is a leader in lip care and synonymous with the product category – it is the #1 brand by volume and has over 80% brand awareness in the United States.
“The Yellow Wood team established Suave Brands Company in May 2023 to acquire the Suave brand from Unilever. We saw the opportunity to grow Suave with a more focused management approach while also creating the corporate infrastructure to acquire and manage additional personal care brands across multiple categories to drive synergies across the platform. We are excited to add ChapStick, another leading brand with deep equity and history, into our platform. At Suave Brands Company, our management team is focused on building a platform of category leading brands that consumers love while working with our retail customers and manufacturing partners to grow the brands. We look forward to continuing to build Suave Brands Company by identifying additional personal care brands to add to the portfolio,” commented Suave Brands Company Chief Executive Officer Daniel Alter.
Suave is a personal care brand that sells products across the hair, body, skin and antiperspirant deodorant segments. The Suave brand sells products for women, men and kids across mass retailers, grocery stores, drug retailers, and ecommerce platforms and today is found in one out of every two U.S. households.
“ChapStick is the #1 lip care brand in the mass, drug, food and convenience store channels. Chapstick products are purchased by one out of every five households in the United States; consumers love the brand. Chapstick has the highest brand awareness in lip care, as well as the strongest purchase conversion among all brands in the category. Similar to Suave, ChapStick will benefit from Suave Brands Company’s leadership, setting the brand up for continued innovation and growth driven by increased consumer marketing investments, as well as a more focused sales approach. We look forward to completing this transaction in the first half of 2024,” added Dana Schmaltz, Partner at Yellow Wood Partners.
Yellow Wood’s diverse portfolio of consumer brands also includes global footcare brands Dr. Scholl’s and Scholl International; Beacon Wellness Brands, led by its anchor brand PlusOne®, the #1 sexual wellness device brand; beauty brands Real Techniques and EcoTools; skincare brand Byoma, and self-tanning brands Isle of Paradise, Tanologist and TanLuxe. In December, Yellow Wood announced the pending acquisition of the Elida Beauty portfolio of brands from Unilever. This platform includes leading brands such as Q-Tips, Caress, TiGi, Ponds, St. Ives, and Noxzema, as well as European brands including Brut, Impulse, Monsavon, and Timotei. This transaction is scheduled to be consummated in 2024.