WHO: Launched in 2015, FounderMade hosts events focused on wellness, beauty, and health for innovative and emerging brands to connect with leading retailers, solutions, and investors. FounderMade focuses on helping businesses grow by providing a discovery platform that delivers networking opportunities, innovative product discovery, and world-class education. The company runs two well-established trade shows—Discovery Show East and West—and has also launched a successful virtual event series in response to the challenges created by the pandemic.
Tarsus, backed by private equity firm Charterhouse Capital Partners, operates trade shows in health care, aerospace, travel, and manufacturing. As the company works to scale in healthcare, it also recently acquired a digital health company called BodySite that will be in the same division as FounderMade.
WHY: FounderMade and HCP will join Tarsus Group as part of its newly created Tarsus Health division, covering the healthcare, wellness, and nutrition industries. In addition to the new acquisitions, the division will also be comprised of existing Tarsus Medical brands (A4M, LiVDerm, PAINWeek, and CMHC) along with BodySite, the digital health platform acquired earlier this year. Tarsus Group plans to add additional healthcare and wellness brands to the growing division in 2022.
Commenting on the acquisitions, Tarsus Group CEO Douglas Emslie said: "I'm delighted that FounderMade and Health Connect Partners are joining Tarsus Group as part of our Tarsus Health division which is a key focus area for the business going forward. These companies perfectly embody what we look for when bringing new brands into the portfolio—strong events that understand and meet their customers' needs, driven by entrepreneurial and energetic teams. They understand the power of face-to-face interaction and have in-person events at their core; HCP's one-to-one model is a format we have seen deliver strong results in our Connect division. I've also been particularly impressed by how FounderMade and HCP have weathered the storm of the past two years by creating strong online offerings. I'm really pleased to be working with Meghan [Asha], David and their teams to develop their businesses and look forward to an exciting future ahead.”
IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Speaking on the acquisition, FounderMade CEO and founder Meghan Asha said: "FounderMade was born out of a passion to help best-in-class consumer businesses scale and innovate. We are really excited to be joining Tarsus Group. We have found a partner that not only values our authenticity and the special community we've built, but will also give us the tools and support to further grow FounderMade."
Asha shared her vision with WWD: "My dream when we started this business was to become the CES for the cosmetics industry," she said. "Because there's been so many beauty shows that have gone out of business in the midst of the pandemic—we were friends with all of them, we love them—it's been such an interesting thing to watch trade shows evolve. We think we can be the leader and basically take market share in these very key industries, the beauty, wellness and health space, and become a global brand."
- Tarsus Group acquired beauty and wellness-focused FounderMade.
- Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but WWD reported that according to industry sources, FounderMade tripled its profits between 2020 and 2021, and is expected to triple again in the next two years
- CEO and founder Meghan Asha will continue to run FounderMade alongside President and COO Lauren Everhart.
- FounderMade plans to run a full calendar of in-person and virtual events in 2022 while also developing niche shows to target current verticals.
- The business plans to continue building services that help brands create access to retailers, distribution, and press.
- In addition to the FounderMade deal, Tarsus has also completed an investment in Health Connect Partners. The acquisitions marks the latest in a busy year for Tarsus, which has completed six investments throughout 2021 while also reopening in-person events in most of its key territories.
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