Coty Seals The Deal To Take 43 Beauty Brands Off Procter & Gamble’s Hands For $12.5B

A new look can be expensive, but hey, sometimes you’ve just got to shell out a few billion or so to try out some new cosmetics, right? After earlier reports that it might be in the buying mood, Coty Inc. announced today that it’s shelling out around $12.5 billion to bring 43 Procter & Gamble beauty brands into its company fold.

The deal will make Coty one of the world’s biggest cosmetic product companies, reports the Financial Times, giving the company a whole new coterie of cosmetics, fragrance and haircare brands.

Brands moving to Coty include Covergirl, Clairol, Max Factor and Wella, which will give a boost to Coty’s efforts to become a major player in the beauty market. The company previously tried and failed to buy Avon Products in 2012 for $14 billion.

Coty might not be a name you know, but it owns a wide variety of brands, and also sells branded fragrances for everyone from Beyoncé to Playboy to Vespa. Coty also peddles nail care products under the Sally Hansen name and nail color brand OPI. This deal will finally give it a stake in the hair care business, which will be new for the company.

P&G will either split or spin off the operations, which are set to merge with a Coty subsidiary under what’s called a “Reverse Morris Trust” transaction: Investors in P&G will hang on to 52% of the new combined business, with Coty’s investors holding the remaining shares.

The Reverse Morris Trust move gets its name from a 1966 case dealing with tax law on spin-offs, FT notes. As long as shareholders of the selling company — in this case, P&G — end up with more than 50% of the separated business, the deal is tax-free.

The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2016.

Coty seals $12.5bn deal for P&G beauty assets [Financial Times]