Image: @billie.

Edgewell, the maker of Schick razors, and P&G, the parent company of Gillette, haven’t had things their own way over the past two years in the acquisition stakes.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the US has quashed two buyout deals involving the shaving giants. In February 2020, the regulator rang down the curtain on Edgewell’s acquisition of Harry’s, the fast-growing DTC shaver brand, deciding that the deal would “eliminate one of the most competitive forces in the shaving industry and inflict significant harm on consumers of razors”.

In January 2020, the FTC also took aim at P&G’s attempted buyout of Billie, the women’s shaver subscription service founded in 2017. The multinational pulled the plug a year later in early 2021.

Edgewell has announced the acquisition of Billie for US$310 million in cash, after the deal was cleared under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvement Act.

Over the past four years, Billie has expanded into personal care and makeup with facial wipes, body lotion, lip balm, dry shampoo and body wash. The Edgewell acquisition will help the brand enter bricks-and-mortar stores, starting in the US in early 2022,  and launch new product categories.

Billie recorded net revenues of US$90 million in the 12 months to September 30th, following a CAGR of about 50 per cent over the past three years.

Co-founders, Georgina Gooley and Jason Bravman, will continue to lead the brand for the foreseeable future.

We are focused on our stated goal of building on our leading position in the women’s shave category, said Rod Little, CEO and President of Edgewell. “Edgewell has been a strategic supplier to Billie since its inception, and we view this acquisition as a natural evolution of the partnership between the two companies.”

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