In Brands, Insight, Professional

Silas Capital, a New York-based emerging growth equity firm, invests in clean color cosmetics brand ILIA.

WHO: ILIA was founded by Sasha Plavsic and her brother, Zachary, who developed a line of clean makeup products. ILIA offers a “full face” assortment of more than 100 distinct high-performance products crafted with certified organic ingredients and non-toxic synthetics. The brand strives to ensure its products are manufactured ethically and sustainably, including the use of recycled aluminum and post-consumer recycled paper printed with vegetable-based dyes. Its unique combination of brilliant pigments, superior performance, and nourishing organics has earned ILIA a leading position in this fast-growing category.

Since 2011, Silas Capital has been an active emerging growth equity and venture capital investor that partners with consumer brands, in order to help these companies achieve significant revenue growth and profitability, improve operational efficiency, and increase brand recognition and value.

WHY: The investment should help ILIA grow its direct-to-consumer business.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Sasha Plavsic, ILIA’s founder, expressed her excitement about the new partnership and the growth prospects for the business. “ILIA has always been a pioneer in clean color, and the clean beauty movement is clearly happening right now. The capital infusion and new partnership will allow us to do things we’ve never done before, like marketing and broader brand awareness across digital and retail. It’s a really exciting time to be in this space.”

The company’s CEO, Lynda Berkowitz, added, “Having worked with Sasha and team for the past few years, we are extremely proud of the business we’ve built to date. I’m excited to partner with Carter, Frank and Brian to continue to build upon the brand’s strong momentum and leverage their unique combination of e-commerce and beauty experience to take advantage of our various growth opportunities ahead.” Prior to joining ILIA, Lynda previously served in lead operating roles at several successful beauty brands, including Too Faced, Bobbi Brown, and Perricone MD.

Brian Thorne, Partner of Silas, stated, “ILIA is leading the movement towards high-performing makeup that is clean and sustainable. Having previously evaluated and invested behind several prestige beauty businesses, we found ILIA to be particularly compelling, given its dynamic founder, product efficacy and strong relationship with Sephora. Additionally, we’re thrilled to have Lynda, an experienced beauty executive, leading the day-to-day operations of the business.”


Silas Capital invests in clean color cosmetics brand ILIA. Terms of the Silas investment were not disclosed.

According to WWD, industry sources said ILIA’s sales have doubled year-over-year for the past three years and the brand is expected to reach $20 million in retail sales for 2019.

Plavsic will remain with the business along with chief executive officer Lynda Berkowitz, who joined the business in 2016 after working at brands like Bobbi Brown, Too Faced, and Perricone.

ILIA is distributed in about 40 Sephora doors, Detox Market, Follain, Credo, Bluemercury, Space NK, and Mecca. By the end of 2019, ILIA will be distributed in about 500 doors globally.

Photo: via ILIA Beauty

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