By  on March 29, 2010

BERLIN — Baden-Baden, Germany-based Fribad Cosmetics Group GmbH, which filed for bankruptcy in May, looks to get on the road to recovery thanks to new investors Baden-Baden Cosmetics Group AG and Heliad Equity Partners.

Last year, the firm’s 70th anniversary, was a bumpy one for Fribad, which produces the Sans Soucis, Biodroga Systems and Futuresse skin and body care lines. In addition to the bankruptcy filing — after being unable to pay wages for its more than 200 employees — the company also lost the license for Bogner perfumes, which it had held since 2007, to German-Austrian Beauty Brands International. Fribad was family-owned and operated since its inception in 1939 until 2007, when it was purchased by Latvia’s Kolonna Group.

Reorganization efforts during last spring and summer, and reduced working hours for some employees, stabilized Fribad and enabled the company to pay wages and commitments, insolvency administrator Andreas Fischer stated.

Subsequently, Baden-Baden Cosmetics Group acquired 100 percent of the assets of Fribad. Then, Heliad said earlier this month it purchased an “indirect” 40 percent stake in Baden-Baden Cosmetics Group through Heliad’s majority interest in TIG Themis Industries Group GmbH & Co. KGaA. The latter transaction is scheduled to close on April 30 and terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Heliad’s operating partner, FCP Frankfurt CapitalPartners AG, holds the remaining 60 percent stake and will provide management in the future, Heliad noted.

“We are confident that we can achieve future targeted development of Baden-Baden Cosmetics Group AG, one of the leading cosmetic companies in Germany, using its existing brands and products,” stated Christoph D. Kauter, deputy chief executive officer of Heliad Equity Partners. “In strategic terms, this involves consolidating the company’s position in Germany and opening new growth markets with its existing customers.”

The firm expects to realize 25 million euros, or $33.5 million at current exchange, in annual sales with the Sans Soucis and Biodroga brands.

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