The case is about the acquisition of Avon Products, Inc (Avon) by its competitor, Brazilian cosmetics and personal care firm Natura&Co (Natura). The acquisition created the fourth largest beauty company in the world. A lot of synergies were expected from the acquisition as both the companies were known for their direct selling models. At the same time, the companies were expected to face integration challenges due to their diverse cultures and values. Avon had been struggling for years, as there had been a fall in its door-to-door cosmetics sales due to changing consumer tastes, growing demand for online beauty products, and stiff competition from rivals. Natura was also fast expanding its footprint by broadening its exposure to the global market with the acquisition of The Body Shop and Aesop. In May 2019, Natura reached an agreement with Avon under which it would buy Avon via a share swap. Natura estimated that the acquisition could yield between US$150 and US$200 million of annual cost savings, benefitting both the companies in the long run. However, it remained to be seen whether the acquisition would help in integrating both the companies with their diverse culture and values.
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The case is structured to achieve the following teaching objectives:
Understand the reasons for which a company acquires its competitor.
Examine the role of acquisition in creating industry leaders.