AVON IN BRAZIL BUY?: Avon Products Inc. is said to be in talks to buy a stake in Jequiti Cosméticos, a Brazilian direct sales cosmetics company, for about 500 million reals, or $246.3 million at current exchange, according to two sources with knowledge of the negotiations. The stake would be significant but wouldn’t give control of the Brazilian company to Avon, the sources said.
Coty Inc. and L’Oréal SA have also courted Jequiti since last year, when its controlling shareholder Silvio Santos, a Brazilian media mogul, hired Barclays plc to find a partner for his cosmetics company.
This story first appeared in the May 21, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
After dropping an attempt to take over Avon last year, Coty in September made an offer to buy Jequiti but wasn’t successful. At the time, Jequiti as a whole was valued at 500 million reals, according to the sources. Coty in January formed a partnership with Jequiti to distribute some of its fragrances in Brazil.
Santos has been selling stakes in some of his companies since 2010 to pay back a 2.5 billion real ($1.23 billion) bailout received from Brazil’s deposit insurance fund after the central bank found evidence of fraud at his bank, Banco Panamericano SA. He later sold the bank.
Avon declined to comment, according to its Brazilian public relations firm, Imagem Corporativa.