European Commission OKs sale of Sara Lee beauty, detergent businesses to Unilever
DOWNERS GROVE, Ill. — The European Commission has approved the sale of Sara Lee’s global body care and European detergent businesses to Unilever, provided that Unilever divest the Sanex brand of bath and body products in the European market after it acquires the business from Sara Lee.
The global body care and European detergent businesses encompass such brands as Sanex, Radox and Duschdas. The transaction was originally announced in September.
In light of this requirement, the parties will make certain amendments to the share purchase agreement, including an adjustment in the purchase price from Euro 1.275 billion ($1.721 billion) to Euro 1.210 billion ($1.633 billion). The deal is expected to close in December.
Marcel Smits, interim CEO of Sara Lee, noted that the change in proceeds will have no effect on its capital plans, and it will continue with its plan to repurchase $2.5 billion to $3 billion of shares by the end of fiscal 2012.
EvoraPlus gains distribution at Winn-Dixie
TAMPA, Fla. — Biopharmaceutical company Oragenics has expanded retail distribution of its oral care probiotic EvoraPlus through an agreement with Winn-Dixie Stores. EvoraPlus will be sold in select Winn-Dixie locations, beginning in January 2011.
ProBiora3, the active ingredient in Oragenics’ probiotic products, is designed to naturally support gum and tooth health while freshening breath and whitening teeth. Oragenics’ chief scientific officer, Jeffrey Hillman, developed ProBiora3 technology during more than 25 years of research, which began at the Harvard-affiliated Forsyth Institute in Boston and continued at the University of Florida. This technology only recently has become available to the general public.
ProBiora3 contains three strains of beneficial bacteria that promise to help maintain a healthy microbial balance in the mouth. It is 100% natural and is made in the United States in an FDA-registered and GMP-certified facility, the company stated.
Energizer leveraging acquisition, product launches to win with retailers
ST. LOUIS — It was announced in October that Energizer Holdings emerged as the winning bidder for American Safety Razor in bankruptcy court proceedings, inking a deal to buy substantially all of ASR’s assets. To top it off, Energizer earlier this year won—ironically from ASR—the entry price point/disposable wet-shaving business at Walmart. In light of these developments, at least one industry observer believed that Energizer is poised for significant growth opportunities.
“Over the past six weeks, Energizer launched/restaged a new three-bladed shaving system under the Wilkinson-Sword banner. The products, Tech 3 for men and Oasis for women, are complete shaving systems with a $5 price point for the handle and $5 for a four pack of blade replacements. This represents a 35% discount to Energizer’s new Hydro 5-blade handle, a 50% discount to the new Gillette Fusion Pro-Glide handle, and a 55% and 70% per blade discount, respectively,” stated SunTrust Robinson Humphrey analyst William Chappell.
While the shave market carries high brand loyalty, the price points could be an attractive trade-up opportunity for traditional disposable users.
“If the launch does prove successful, we believe that Energizer can leverage this strategy to win new business with other retailers. This is only speculation, but we believe it could be why the company was interested in buying the American Safety assets,” Chappell stated.