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Revlon Deal Process Said to Start After Labor Day

Goldman Sachs is said to be handling the process.

The Revlon deal process is about to get started.

According to industry sources, Goldman Sachs is gearing up to go out to interested and prospective buyers for Revlon Inc. after Labor Day. Revlon was said to tap Goldman earlier this month to explore strategic options for the company, including a sale of all or parts of it.

Revlon is said to be looking for a transformative deal and wants to sell either the whole company or some of the big brands, according to a source. What the company is not considering, according to a senior executive at majority shareholder MacAndrews & Forbes, is taking Revlon private. MacAndrews owns more than 87 percent of Revlon, recent Securities and Exchange Commission filings show.

“Given the global surge in the beauty industry and the strength of the company’s iconic brands with the unrivaled brand equity and reach, we feel that Revlon right now would be an incredibly valuable asset for a variety of buyers, both inside and outside of the traditional beauty industry,” said a senior MacAndrews executive, authorized to speak on the condition of anonymity.

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Revlon has struggled in recent years.

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Right now, the Elizabeth Arden brand, which Revlon bought in 2016 after it said it was considering strategic alternatives, is the best performing part of the portfolio, given the recent boom in the skin-care category. The Revlon brand itself is still large, but does less than $1 billion in annual sales.

For Revlon’s most recent quarter, the company’s sales dipped 6 percent, to $570.2 million. Its net loss narrowed during that period, to $63.7 million from $122.5 million in the prior-year period.

Beauty industry sources have expressed skepticism about Revlon being able to find a buyer.

One financial source said the Revlon brand is “in real trouble,” but that the Elizabeth Arden unit might be able to find a buyer.

That source noted that Revlon’s debt load is becoming a problem. SEC filings show the company is carrying about $2.7 billion in long-term debt, including a new $200 million term loan from earlier this year that’s secured by American Crew.

“It’s death by a thousand cuts,” the source said. “It’s lack of investment in the Revlon brand, lack of making acquisitions that were relevant — they put two B-minus assets together, and got a C or D out of it.”

Revlon has also been through an inordinate amount of executive turnover.

Right now, the company is helmed by Debbie Perelman, the daughter of Ronald Perelman, who owns most of the business through MacAndrews & Forbes. Debbie Perelman became the company’s first female chief executive officer in the company’s 87-year history.

She stepped in after Fabian Garcia, who oversaw the acquisition of Elizabeth Arden and subsequent restructuring of the business, left. He lasted less than two years, and came in to replace Lorenzo Delpani, who had stayed on for about three years.