Founded in 1980, Quala now has a strong presence in ten countries in Latin America: Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Peru, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Guatemala. Its beauty & personal care and home care portfolio includes leading local brands Savital/Savilé (Haircare and Skin Cleansing), eGo (Male Haircare and Styling), Bio-Expert (Haircare), Fortident (Oral Care) and Aromatel (Fabric Conditioners); with a combined turnover of over USD 400M in 2016.
Paul Polman, CEO Unilever, said: “We are delighted to be acquiring Quala’s beauty & personal care and home care portfolio. Quala has done an outstanding job of building strong and competitive local brands. The inclusion of these brands in our stable will consolidate our leading position in Haircare globally, and contribute to our Oral Care and Male Grooming businesses, complementing very well our existing offering.”
Miguel Kozuszok, Executive Vice President, Latin America, Unilever, added: “Quala’s brands will give us an even sounder footing in Latin America, broadening our offering in Mexico, Colombia and Ecuador. We look forward to continuing to grow these great brands.”
Michael De Rhodes, Chairman, Quala, said: “Following a strategic review, we have decided to focus our efforts and resources on accelerating growth on our core business. As a result of this transaction Quala intends to increase its investment in innovation, continue broadening our product and brand portfolio, and maintaining our leadership positions in the region.”
Quala’s Savital/Savilé is the number one brand in haircare by volume in Colombia, and has a good presence in the rest of the North Latin America region. It uses Aloe Vera as the core ingredient across the brand, and incorporates other functional ingredients – such as Keratin, Biotin and Argan Oil – as variants that appeal to consumers. eGo is the number one male hair grooming brand in Colombia and Mexico, and has presence across eight markets; with 85% of its turnover coming from styling.
Bio-Expert is a Haircare brand with a strong, on-trend natural positioning. Fortident is the number two oral care brand in Colombia and Ecuador, showing steady market share growth. Aromatel is a strong brand that rapidly achieved the number two position in fabric conditioners in Colombia and Ecuador, and will complement well Unilever’s laundry business in those markets.
“The acquisition of Quala’s beauty & personal care and homecare business reinforces Unilever’s commitment to our long-term model of compounding growth and sustainable value creation. The active management of the portfolio through bolt-on acquisitions such as this one, and the sustained investment in our existing brands, will help us deliver continued growth ahead of our markets,” Polman added.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.