• Coty withdraws from Avon bid

    Coty announced on Monday that it was withdrawing its $10.7bn bid on Avon after two months of pursuit. In a letter to Avon's board, Coty chairman Bart Becht said "While we have waited patiently, Avon's Board has now had more than two months to consider whether to engage in discussions and permit us to conduct due diligence ... I find it remarkable that since we made our revised proposal, and despite repeated requests over the last 24 hours, no one from Avon's Board or management has been willing to speak with us ... your total lack of engagement with us leads us to believe that you remain reluctant to explore a friendly, negotiated combination on a reasonable timetable. Two months is enough. Consequently, as our deadline to begin discussions expired today, our proposal is withdrawn".

    Coty, who create fragrance for Davidoff, Calvin Klein and a host of celebrities are now looking at other opportunities. According to an article published today on WWD, Coty are considering an IPO.

    In other Coty news, the company have also relaunched their website to better showcase their fifty-brand portfolio.


    The letter to Avon's board is published in full below:

    Dear Members of the Board:

    Since we first reached out to Avon Products, Inc. at the beginning of March with our acquisition proposal, it has been our sincere hope that we would be able to explore together a friendly combination of our two companies that would provide premium value to Avon's stockholders and benefit its customers, representatives and associates around the world.

    While we have waited patiently, Avon's Board has now had more than two months to consider whether to engage in discussions and permit us to conduct due diligence. We have not asked the Board to accept our proposed purchase price or to agree to sell the Company, but only to sit down and discuss whether there might be a common basis for pursuing a transaction that we believe would be beneficial to all parties.

    Last week, we offered Avon's Board an increase in the value of our proposal, additional detail on the key areas of focus for our diligence, a willingness to sign a standstill agreement and one last opportunity to engage in discussions. We believe that we provided the Board with ample time to respond, particularly since it has already had months to consider our initial request. Yesterday, we received a two sentence email indicating, without explanation, that Avon's Board would need another week to consider our request. Since receiving your email, we have reached out to Avon's Board, management and advisors to understand why additional time is needed, but we have received no explanation. I find it remarkable that since we made our revised proposal, and despite repeated requests over the last 24 hours, no one from Avon's Board or management has been willing to speak with us, including Fred Hassan, Andrea Jung and Sheri McCoy.

    This continued delay and unwillingness to engage in discussions is disappointing and certainly not a constructive way to proceed. We believe that we provided a compelling and well-financed proposal for a business facing multiple challenges. As you know, our proposal included equity commitments in excess of $5.8 billion from Joh. A. Benckiser, BDT Capital Partners and certain of its limited partners, and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Debt financing was to be provided by JPMorgan Securities.

    We received encouragement from many of your shareholders, research analysts and others in the financial community. Despite this support, your total lack of engagement with us leads us to believe that you remain reluctant to explore a friendly, negotiated combination on a reasonable timetable. Two months is enough. Consequently, as our deadline to begin discussions expired today, our proposal is withdrawn. It is time for Coty Inc. to move on and pursue other opportunities.

    While we are disappointed, we wish you success in pursuing your standalone turnaround strategy.

    With best regards,

    Bart Becht

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    Comments 2 Comments
    1. donna255's Avatar
      donna255 -
      That leaves it open for L'Oreal who are also circling Avon.
    1. mr. reasonable's Avatar
      mr. reasonable -
      Ouch.



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