With a cult following on Instagram singing its praises, including fitness guru, Ashy Bines, and Bachelorette star, Abbie Chatfield, Gold Coast skincare brand, Esmi Skin Minerals is destined for big things.
The brand, which sits under parent company, Makeup Cartel, has grabbed the attention of private equity firm, Point King Capital, who has made a minority investment in the business.
According to Point King founding partner Sam McKay, the firm has bought a “meaningful minority” in Makeup Cartel, which also owns Poni Cosmetics.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Esmi is said to make up the vast majority of the Makeup Cartel operation, and WWD reported that industry sources said it is on track to do about $15 million in sales for 2020.
Esmi, born out of founder Evette Hess’ experiences in a clinical environment, has been focusing on its Australian base, but has its sights set on an international market.
“Our main focus has really been Australia,” said Hess. “We wanted to really perfect the relationship with the customer in a local way, and then once we achieved a standard we’re satisfied with, really put our wings out - going into the U.S. market is definitely on the radar.”
And that's something Point King plan on diving into.
“We are actively working through fiscal 2021 budget planning with Evette and the team and we are looking at how we can continue to invest in talent, in marketing…and then international is a focus…with multichannel distribution,” said McKay.
While many beauty dealmakers are waiting out the COVID-19 pandemic before closing transactions, Point King and Hess said they were able to iron out the details despite massive shifts in everyday life.
“We were able to communicate transparently when the pandemic started on what was the right structure for everyone to move forward,” McKay added. “The unprecedented crisis that we’re experiencing provided us with a real-life scenario for how we work through our investment partnership.”
Esmi has continued to do well during the pandemic, which Hess attributed to shoppers spending more time on mobile, and requiring fewer than usual touch points in order to make a purchase. “Our new customers increased three or four times,” she said.