Birchbox acquired by Viking Global Investors

US firm Birchbox has taken on a new majority stakeholder in the form of Viking Global Investments, according to media reports, after months of acquisition talks for the online beauty retailer.


Birchbox

Already an investor in the beauty start-up, Viking Global has now acquired a majority stake after agreeing to invest around $15 million of new cash into the businessaccording to a report by technology website Recode.

Fellow investors in the beauty e-tailer  -- Accel Partners and First Round Capital -- will relinquish their stakes, the sources told the tech site on Tuesday.

Co-founder and chief executive, Katia Beauchamp, will retain her role in the company, releasing a statement on the investment news.

“As an independent company with renewed investment, we are in a position to actively pursue plans that help further our mission and fuel our ambitious goals in the U.S. and in our global markets,” said Beauchamp.

“As part of that strategy, we are prioritising product innovation, the evolution of our digital experience, and scaled partnership opportunities.”

Birchbox, which has a subscription-based model, has raised more than $80 million from investors since it was founded in 2010, in addition to previously undisclosed venture debt that the startup secured in 2015.

In August last year, the online cosmetics retailer was in discussion for a potential sale with several retailers including Walmart, but a deal was not struck.

The investment comes on the back of a senior management reshuffle at Birchbox, after President and COO Philippe Pinatel, who was in charge for two years, left the company to head M.A.C Cosmetics, the make-up brand belonging to the Estée Lauder group.

Birchbox boasts 2.5 million active customers and is operating in six countries. 
 

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