Berkshire Partners and Rhône Invest in Coty, Inc.

Boston-based Berkshire Partners and Rhône, with offices in New York and London, are announcing they’ve made minority equity investments in the New York-based fragrance company Coty. Investors from both of the private equity firms will take a board seat at the company. Terms of the investments aren’t being disclosed.

PRESS RELEASE:

Berkshire Partners LLC, the Boston-based private equity firm, and Rhône, a private equity firm with offices in New York and London, today announced they have made minority equity investments in Coty Inc., a leading global beauty company. Each of the investors will be represented on the company’s Board of Directors. Terms of the transactions were not disclosed.

“By bringing these partners on board, Coty will be in a stronger position to prepare for future and larger acquisitions while maintaining the culture that makes Coty such a unique place in the beauty industry.”
Coty announced several strategic acquisitions in late 2010, including OPI, a preeminent provider of nail care products; philosophy, Inc., a premier skin care and cosmetics company; TJoy, a leading Chinese skin care company; and Dr. Scheller Cosmetics AG, manufacturer of some of Germany’s most popular makeup and skin care brands. With these additions, Coty continues to strengthen its unparalleled brand portfolios in fragrance, color cosmetics and skin care around the globe.

Rhône Managing Director M. Steven Langman commented, “Coty is an established leader in the global fragrance, beauty and skincare industry, with an impressive collection and diversity of consumer brands. Rhône is excited to be partnering with Coty, its management team and its shareholders in this transaction and to support Coty in the realization of its strategic plans.”

Berkshire Managing Director Brad Bloom commented, “We are impressed by Coty’s rich heritage, unique culture, and the deep connections its brands have with consumers. We look forward to supporting Coty in this exciting chapter of the company’s growth.”

“This mutually beneficial agreement allows Coty to continue its accelerated growth path organically and externally around the globe,” said Bernd Beetz, CEO, Coty Inc. “By bringing these partners on board, Coty will be in a stronger position to prepare for future and larger acquisitions while maintaining the culture that makes Coty such a unique place in the beauty industry.”

BofA Merrill Lynch represented Berkshire Partners, and Morgan Stanley represented Rhône in connection to the transaction.

About Coty Inc.

Coty was created in Paris in 1904 by Francois Coty who is credited with founding the modern fragrance industry.

Today, Coty Inc. is a recognized leader in global beauty with annual net sales of nearly $4 billion. Driven by an entrepreneurial spirit, passion, innovation and creativity, Coty Inc. has developed an unrivaled portfolio of notable brands and delivers its innovative products to consumers in 90 markets worldwide.

The Coty Prestige brand portfolio is distributed in prestige and ultra-prestige stores and includes Balenciaga, Bottega Veneta, Calvin Klein, Cerruti, Chloé, Chopard, Davidoff, Jennifer Lopez, Jil Sander, JOOP!, Karl Lagerfeld, Kenneth Cole, L.A.M.B. fragrance by Gwen Stefani, La Voce by Reneée Fleming , Lancaster, Marc Jacobs, Nikos, philosophy, Sarah Jessica Parker, Vera Wang, Vivienne Westwood and Wolfgang Joop.

The Coty Beauty brand portfolio is more widely distributed and includes adidas, ASTOR, Baby Phat, Beyoncé Knowles, Celine Dion, Chupa Chups, David and Victoria Beckham, Esprit, Exclamation, Faith Hill, GUESS?, Halle Berry, Jovan, Kate Moss, Kylie Minogue, La Cross, Lady Gaga, Manhattan, Manhattan Clearface, Miss Sporty, Nautica, N.Y.C. New York Color, Nicole by OPI, OPI, Pierre Cardin¹, Playboy, Rimmel, Sally Hansen, Stetson, Tim McGraw, TJoy and Tonino Lamborghini.

Coty and Puig Fashion and Beauty S.L. have a strategic partnership for the distribution of the perfume lines of Antonio Banderas, Carolina Herrera, Nina Ricci, Prada, Paco Rabanne and Shakira in the United States and Canada.

For additional information about Coty Inc., please visit www.coty.com.

1. Not available in North America

About Berkshire Partners LLC

Berkshire Partners, the Boston-based private equity firm, has invested in over 100 leading mid-sized companies since the mid-1980s through seven investment funds with aggregate capital of $6.5 billion. Berkshire has developed specific industry experience in several areas including retailing, consumer products, manufacturing, transportation, energy, business services and communications. The firm seeks to invest $50 million to $500 million of equity capital in each portfolio company. For additional information, visit www.berkshirepartners.com.

About Rhône

Rhône was founded in 1996 and has offices in New York, London and Paris. Rhône focuses on middle-market private equity investments in businesses with pan-European or trans-Atlantic presence or growth prospects. Rhône’s investment philosophy includes the development of strong, strategic partnerships with the management of portfolio companies in which it invests. Rhône currently has investments in a diversified portfolio of companies.