Perfect Diary’s parent company Yatsen Group unveiled plans to buy Eve Lom, a UK prestige skincare brand, kicking off a strategic shift for the Chinese beauty unicorn.
On Tuesday night, Yatsen Group announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase a majority stake in Eve Lom from Manzanita Capital, the London-based private equity firm owning the business. The deal is expected to be completed within the next few weeks.
“We are excited to welcome Eve Lom’s passionate team with diverse international backgrounds in the fashion and beauty industry to enrich our global brand-building capabilities and product offerings,” said Jinfeng Huang, Yatsen Group’s CEO and co-founder, in a statement.
Yatsen’s move is consistent with the company’s intention to extend its reach in the high-end market. In October 2020, it acquired French premium skincare brand Galénic.
Founded in 2016, the company is named after the founders’ shared alma mater, Sun Yat-sen University, which commemorates the revolutionary leader Sun Yat-sen.
It then created Perfect Diary, which has grown into a beauty giant for the digital age through a combination of strong social media presence, collaboration with charismatic influencers, analysis of consumer data and low prices. The start-up success also comes down to Generation Z’s openness for homegrown brands and high willingness to spend. During Alibaba’s Double 11 shopping festival in November, it only took the brand 33 minutes to earn more than 100 million yuan ($15 million) on the online retail platform Tmall.
Yatsen now has a network of more than 200 bricks-and-mortar retail stores. Last November, the company filed for an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange and raised more than $600 million. The company has launched three cosmetics and skincare brands including Perfect Diary, Little Ondine and Abby’s Choice, trailing only L’Oreal and LVMH in the world’s second-largest make-up market.
Dubbed “China’s L’Oreal”, Yatsen has shown international aspirations. It has opened its own online store in Southeast Asia including in the Philippines, Singapore and Malaysia. It also has an official store on Lazada.
Eve Lom founded the eponymous brand in 1985 after she opened her first beauty salon in London and started selling cleansing balm. The brand is famous for its products, which are marketed as being free from harmful additive and synthetic fragrances and dyes. It has a presence across North America, Europe and Asia.