In Brands, Finance, Professional

Frédéric Fekkai, in partnership with Cornell Capital LLC, has acquired the brand he started in 1996 by acquiring Frédéric Fekkai Brands. This deal marks the fourth time the 23-year-old Fekkai brand has been sold.

WHO: Fekkai Brands was created in 1996 by Frédéric Fekkai. Today the business consists of the Fekkai brand sold in mass market retailers and The One by Frédéric Fekkai sold at Ulta Beauty, as well as six salons in North America

Blue Mistral LLC, a holding company founded by Fekkai and Cornell Capital, will own and operate Fekkai Brands together with Bastide, a fast-growing Provence-based provider of luxury fragrances and hand and body care products that Fekkai has led since 2017.

Cornell Capital LLC is a $2.5 billion private investment firm founded by Henry Cornell, former vice chair of Goldman Sachs’ merchant banking division.

Fekkai’s fund, called Mistral Capital Partners, and Cornell Capital LLC have created a new holding company called Blue Mistral, which will own both the Fekkai brands as well as Bastide, the Provençal-based skin- and body-care line that Fekkai and his wife, Shirin von Wulffen, acquired in 2016. Fekkai and von Wulffen will continue to own the majority of Bastide.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: “I am thrilled to rejoin Fekkai Brands and eager to reconnect with the salons, teams and consumers,” said Fekkai. “This acquisition will provide me the opportunity to reinfuse my passion for innovation into the brand, while reigniting its growth and guiding Fekkai Brands through its next chapter in a modern and exciting way.”

“The opportunity to partner with Frédéric, a proven entrepreneur in the beauty sector, as he returns to the helm of his iconic brand is truly compelling,” said Henry Cornell, senior partner of Cornell Capital. “Leveraging Cornell Capital’s cross-border network and operational expertise, and Frédéric’s deep relationships and reputation within the industry, Fekkai Brands is well-positioned to succeed in the growing global cosmetics and personal care industry.”

Joel Ronkin, exiting CEO of Fekkai Brands, added, “Frédéric is an accomplished entrepreneur with a proven track record of building highly desirable brands. We are confident that his return to the Company will be instrumental in fueling its growth and driving innovation.”

DETAILS: 

  • According to WWD, sales were estimated by market sources to have a wholesale volume of about $35 million.
  • Financial terms of Fekkai’s offer to buy back the brand were not disclosed, but according to WWD analysts, they estimate that the purchase price would have been around or slightly less than the estimated $50 million that Designer Parfums and Luxe Brands paid for it.
  • Fekkai first introduced his product range in 1995 as part of a joint venture with Chanel.
  • In 2007 the Fekkai brand was acquired by L Catterton Partners.
  • Procter & Gamble acquired the company from Catterton for over $400 million in 2008.
  • P&G sold Fekkai Brands in 2015 for $50 million to a joint venture controlled by Designer Parfums and Luxe Brands.
  • Fekkai will become chief executive officer of Blue Mistral and will appoint CEOs for Bastide and Fekkai.

Photo: via Frédéric Fekkai

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