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Body Shop Buys Stake in Brazil Retailer

The Emporio Body Store retails a range of beauty products through a franchise network in Brazil.

The Body Shop, which is owned by L’Oréal, has purchased a 51 percent stake in Emporio Body Store in Brazil. The Body Shop also acquired an option to increase its ownership share to 80 percent by 2019.

Founded in 1997 in Porto Alegre, Brazil, by Tobias Chanan, the Emporio Body Store retails a range of beauty products through a franchise network. Chanan will remain chief executive officer of the group with the objective of expanding the business through its franchise channel. It will merchandise a range of Body Shop products complemented by new items developed locally with L’Oréal’s research center in Rio de Janeiro.

Sales volume of Emporio Body Store for 2012 totaled 20 million Brazilian reals, or $9.2 million at current exchange. Since 2011, when Helio Seibel of Grupo Ligna became the major shareholder, the business has increased from 36 points of sale in 2010 to 84 in 2012, to an estimated 130 POS currently.

Brazil has a population of 200 million and claims the largest economy in Latin America, with a gross domestic product per capita of $12,100. The beauty market there has been booming and ranks fourth in the world.

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“I am delighted by this opportunity to launch The Body Shop brand in Brazil through this new venture,” said Jeremy Schwartz, chairman and ceo of The Body Shop, said.

Chanan added, “In The Body Shop, we have found our kindred spirit: Thanks to the synergy of our values, vision and culture, we will have the opportunity to greatly accelerate our business in Brazil.”

The acquisition is subject to the approval of the Brazilian Anti-Trust Authority CADE, and is expected to be completed before the end of the year.