Pure Beauty

The Body Shop owner Aurelius only paid £3.5 million upfront for retailer

By Amanda Pauley | Published: 30-Apr-2024

The firm only gave former owner Natura & Co a fraction of the cost of the £207 million acquisition deal before the chain collapsed into administration

Aurelius Group allegedly only paid £3.5m for The Body Shop prior to administration despite agreeing to a £207m deal for the retailer.

The private equity firm reportedly only handed a fraction of the cost upfront to the company’s former owner Natura & Co when it acquired the beauty business in November 2023, according to The Telegraph.

The shortfall is said to stem largely from a £90m performance-based payment that Aurelius Group was expected to pay over five years. 

That sum is now unlikely to be paid given that The Body Shop’s UK business collapsed into administration in February 2024 – just three months after purchase.

The company’s Denmark, German and French arms soon followed suit. 

The £207m sale price was the enterprise value of the business, which included things like debts taken on by Aurelius Group during the takeover. 

Therefore, the firm was not obliged to pay that sum in full to Natura & Co.  

However, the news has reignited questions about the circumstances surrounding the deal.

Aurelius Group and Natura & Co are also in a dispute over alleged unpaid bonuses to former employees.

Natura & Co has criticised The Body Shop’s new owner for failing to pay millions of pounds that was promised to around 30 further employees.

There are also fresh discussions surrounding the triggers behind The Body Shop’s downfall.

A new report alleges the retailer fell into administration after Aurelius Group failed to secure fresh funding following HSBC withdrawing its line of credit

Cosmetics Business has contacted The Body Shop and Aurelius Group for comment.  

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