Care Cosmetics and 3d investors consolidate Benelux beauty distribution through acquisition of Consulta24 january 2022
Care Cosmetics, the Dutch market leader in the distribution of cosmetic products, has acquired the Belgian company Consulta. The acquisition is part of a clear European expansion strategy. In 2021, both companies achieved substantial growth, despite - but also thanks to - the corona pandemic. Since mid-2020, 3d investors has been on board as an active shareholder at Care Cosmetics.
Care Cosmetics, with in offices in Barendrecht and Maaseik, was founded in 1996 by Duco Van Keimpema and quickly grew into the largest supplier to beauty specialists in the Netherlands, with some 4,000 beauty salons, as well as larger retail companies such as DA, Douglas and Etos, in its portfolio. Well-known brands distributed by Care Cosmetics are RoC, Annemarie Börlind, Guinot, Team Dr. Joseph and own brands Pascaud and Dermaprime.
Belgian company Consulta was founded in 1981 in Mechelen, first as a manufacturer of hair removal products and soon after as a distributor of cosmetics. In 2000, current CEO Marijn van Benthem acquired 50% of the shares in Consulta, in 2011 the remaining 50%. Today, Consulta focuses on the distribution of care brands and related items for beauty salons, specialized foot care, pharmacy and para-pharmacy. With over 2,000 professional customers and well-known names like Multipharma and Medimarket as clients, Consulta is the market leader in the Benelux.
Thanks to active management and accelerated digitalisation, among other things, both companies, which employ around 100 people, achieved more than 15% revenue growth in 2021, together accounting for €25 million.
"We had been looking for some time for a successful partner who could help us with our European growth plans," says Duco Van Keimpema. "It has long been clear to us that Consulta is the right partner for this. Marijn shares our European vision and the Consulta portfolio is very complementary to that of Care Cosmetics. Moreover, Consulta, like Care Cosmetics, showed great robustness during the past Covid-19 period and both organisations were able to face the threats and seize new opportunities, including e-commerce, and thus deliver strong results." A perfect match.
"We have of course known each other for some time," Marijn van Benthem adds, "and so we knew from each other where our ambitions lay. Our knowledge is close to that of Care Cosmetics, we are both market leaders in our region and when you put those things together you get a huge potential for steady pan-European growth."
"The merger is not only better for our companies," says van Benthem, "but also for our customers and the brands we distribute. After all, big players have more resources, which is useful for the former and interesting for the latter, because with a combined 6,000 salons and practices as customers in the Benelux you obviously have something to offer internationally."
Following the acquisition, Marijn van Benthem will remain on board as a shareholder and will be responsible for Belgium and Luxembourg within the management team of the expanded Care Cosmetics, in order to ensure continuity and improvements for Consulta customers and to shape further growth.
Care Cosmetics continues to pursue its expansion plans also after the acquisition of Consulta. "It's no secret that Germany is high on our wish list," says Duco Van Keimpema, "but there are also a few more acquisitions in the pipeline for the coming months in Belgium and the Netherlands."
Since the end of 2020, Care Cosmetics has been supported in its growth by the Belgian family investment company 3d investors, which also previously invested in Studio 100. "This acquisition is a first and logical step in Care Cosmetics' European expansion," says Investment Director Nicolas Sneyers of 3d investors. "Early on in our partnership with Duco, it became clear that Consulta was the preferred partner to strengthen the activities in the Benelux. Combined, both organisations form an even stronger distribution partner that serves the entire Benelux market locally. We are therefore very much looking forward to working with Marijn and as a shareholder we will of course support the further growth and internationalisation of the company."
According to Filip Mariën, managing partner of Marktlink, the new Dutch-Belgian partnership confirms a trend: "Although it is economically natural for Dutch and Belgian companies to merge, Marktlink has seen strong growth in Benelux deals in recent years. These are driven by consolidation, internationalisation and digitalisation, among other things. The specialist beauty distributor partnership between Dutch company Care Cosmetics and Belgian company Consulta has resulted in a market leadership position in the Benelux. This Benelux platform will further serve as the basis for the development of a European player active in specialised beauty distribution, with the support of the family-run, long-term investor 3d investors. We note that, since investing in Care Cosmetics, as in the run-up to the partnership with Consulta, 3d investors has proved to be a great added value, which, in combination with Duco and Marijn's entrepreneurship, lays a solid foundation for becoming a reference player in Europe."
About Care Cosmetics
Care Cosmetics was founded in 1996. The company is a cosmetics wholesaler focused on beauty professionals and retail chains. In addition to products, customers can also get professional training on how to use the products. For more information about Care Cosmetics, please visit https://carecosmetics.nl/.