15 November 2016

ACQUIRE - Unilever Acquires Seventh Generation Inc.

Unilever announced last week they have completed the acquisition of Seventh Generation, Inc., a North American home and personal care products company.

Their intention to acquire the company was publicized in September, shortly after reports they were in talks to acquire The Honest Company.

Seventh Generation is a Vermont based business which makes natural and eco-conscious cleaning products.

The company’s turnover exceeded US $200m in 2015 and it has seen double digit compounded annual growth over the last 10 years.

Seventh Generation has a comprehensive product portfolio and a distribution network covering the ‘natural’ category in grocery, mass merchandise and e-commerce channels.

The biggest difference between The Honest Company, that also sells natural products, and Seventh Generation is the former largely sells directly to the consumer while Seventh Generation sells predominantly through retailers.

Nitin Paranjpe, President of Unilever’s Home Care business said in a release: “Seventh Generation has long been a disruptor in the US marketplace, leading the industry in sustainable innovation while attracting new generations of conscious consumers. This addition to Unilever’s product portfolio will help us meet rising demand for high-quality products with a purpose.”

As previously reported in InfoStream, the value of potentially acquiring The Honest Company goes beyond the product portfolio.

It indicates a concentrated effort by Unilever to access the subscription bases of successful start-ups in order to diversify their customer base and remain agile in a new market environment.

This focus was demonstrated earlier this year when Unilever purchased ECommerce startup Dollar Shave Club.

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