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UNILEVER (ULVR)
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Unilever to Add Skin-Care Brand From South Korea -- WSJ

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09/26/2017 | 08:48am CEST
By Saabira Chaudhuri 

This article is being republished as part of our daily reproduction of WSJ.com articles that also appeared in the U.S. print edition of The Wall Street Journal (September 26, 2017).

LONDON -- Unilever PLC has agreed to buy Carver Korea, a Seoul-based maker of toners and moisturizers, for $2.7 billion, the latest in a string of skin-care acquisitions as it pivots toward higher-growth sectors.

Unilever is buying what it described as South Korea's fastest-growing skin-care business from Bain Capital Private Equity and Goldman Sachs, which acquired the company slightly over a year ago. Carver sells age-management, skin-hydration and skin-nourishment products under the brand AHC. It sells its products in Korea, China and the U.S.

In recent years Unilever has upped its exposure to skin products, buying four high-end skin-care brands in 2015 alone. Last year it bought Dollar Shave Club, which gave it men's skin-care brand Big Cloud and hairstyling brand Boogies.

Under Paul Polman, a former Procter & Gamble Co. executive who became Unilever's chief executive in 2009, the company has shifted away from food and toward higher-margin personal care. In 2016, personal care made up 40% of Unilever's revenue, up from 28% in 2008.

The company has also been working to fend off an increasingly sophisticated array of local competitors that market through channels such as Instagram and YouTube and often sell directly to customers over the web. Last year it embarked on a restructuring aimed at making its local units more responsive to trends in their markets and is employing its own social-media influencers while also buying local brands.

Buying Carver will help Unilever gain ground in the Korean beauty market, where hair and beauty trends often influence ones further west. South Korea is the world's fourth largest market for skin care, according to Unilever.

Carver, which started out in 1999 selling products to beauty salons, reported sales of EUR321 million ($383.5 million) and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of EUR137 million in 2016. It sells essences, toners, moisturizers, masks, and sun protection.

Write to Saabira Chaudhuri at [email protected]

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Financials (€)
Sales 2017 53 945 M
EBIT 2017 9 364 M
Net income 2017 5 946 M
Debt 2017 16 452 M
Yield 2017 3,07%
P/E ratio 2017 22,27
P/E ratio 2018 18,42
EV / Sales 2017 2,89x
EV / Sales 2018 2,90x
Capitalization 140 B
Chart UNILEVER
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Unilever Technical Analysis Chart | ULVR | GB00B10RZP78 | 4-Traders
Technical analysis trends UNILEVER
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TrendsBearishNeutralBullish
Income Statement Evolution
Consensus
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 21
Average target price 51,2 €
Spread / Average Target 11%
EPS Revisions
Managers
NameTitle
Paulus Gerardus J. Polman Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director
Marijn E. Dekkers Chairman
Graeme David Pitkethly Chief Financial Officer & Executive Director
David Blanchard Chief Research & Development Officer
Ann Marie Fudge Vice Chairman
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