Thursday 22 March 2018

Broadlake sells majority stake in Irish skincare company Vita Liberata

Pete Smyth, founder and CEO of Broadlake
Pete Smyth, founder and CEO of Broadlake
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Dublin-headquartered private investment firm Broadlake has sold its majority stake in Irish skincare company Vita Liberata to US-based Crown Laboratories.

The deal is set to be worth in the region of $30m (€25m), according to market sources.

"We backed an ambitious team in 2012 and over the last five years have supported them during a period of phenomenal growth. Over this time the company has successfully developed its product ranges, brands, channels and international reach," Pete Smyth, founder and CEO of Broadlake, said.

Founded in 2003 by Alyson Hogg, Vita Liberata was the first completely non-toxic tanning brand.

Ms. Hogg will stay on as president of consumer brands for Crown Laboratories the speciality pharmaceutical company focused on dermatology, which has the backing of New York private investment firm Hildred Capital Partners.

"Crown and Hildred have a genuine understanding of the sun care market and a very impressive vision for the Vita Liberata brand. We are thrilled to partner with them to leverage Crown’s strong positioning within the dermatology space and advance our mission of making self-tanning a viable alternative to sun exposure for all," Ms Hogg said.

Meanwhile Broadlake, which typically invests between €2m and €10m in established and growing businesses, invested in Vita Liberata in 2012 to accelerate the international growth of the business, supporting its successful expansion into the North American market.

This is Broadlakes second major deal in two months. In November last year shower enclosures company Merlyn Industries, was sold to UK-based Norcros for £60m (€68m). The Kilkenny-based firm, was acquired on a debt-free, cash-free basis from its shareholders the Hoyne family and Broadlake.

Vita Liberata’s award-winning collection is sold in premium retailers across the US and Europe.

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