Unilever to buy Alberto Culver for USD 3.7 bn

"We are delighted to be acquiring Alberto Culver. Their people have done an excellent job of building an impressive range of brands such as TRESemme, VO5, Nexxus, St Ives and Simple," Unilever CEO Paul Polman said.

The acquisition would boost Unilever's existing brand portfolio which includes brands like Dove, Clear and Sunsilk in hair care and Pond's and Vaseline in skin care.

"The acquisition makes Unilever the world's leading company in hair conditioning, the second largest in shampoo and the third largest in styling, and significantly enhances its hair care presence in the US, Canada, the UK, Mexico and Australasia, all of which will be significant hair care markets for years to come," Unilever said in a statement.

Commenting on the acquisition Polman further said "Personal Care is a strategic category for Unilever and growing rapidly. Ten years ago it represented 20 per cent of our turnover; strong organic growth has driven it to now reach over 30 per cent, with strong positions in many of the emerging markets."

Alberto Culver has operations in nine countries, including the US, Canada, Argentina, Mexico, the UK, South Africa and Australasia. It has six manufacturing facilities and employs around 2,700 people.

The acquisition is subject to regulatory nod, approval of the Alberto Culver shareholders and other customary closing conditions.
For the year ending June 30, 2010, Alberto Culver had sales to the tune of USD 1.6 billion.

Polman added, "Organic growth remains the cornerstone of our energising ambition to double the size of Unilever whilst reducing our overall environmental impact. Bolt-on acquisitions such as Alberto Culver supplement organic growth and add powerful new brands to our portfolio."

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