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Estée Lauder to Buyout Tom Ford for At Least 3 Billion

Rumors are going around in the fashion world that Tom Ford is looking to sell his namesake brand just after Bloomberg said the fashion and beauty business had appointed Goldman Sachs to find a buyer. 

Speculation is rising that Estée Lauder may be the leading contender to buy out the business as it already has the license for Tom Ford Beauty. Tom Ford, the company, currently designs and retails men’s and women’s wear, accessories, fragrances, beauty, and eyewear. Estée Lauder, which does not directly operate any fashion companies, could license out the ready-to-wear if it were to acquire the business. 

The Wall Street Journal has said an Estée Lauder buyout could be valued at a 3 billion dollar deal, as the cosmetic giant hopes to regain the profit it lost after its market value tumbled by 26 percent this year.

Sales of Tom Ford skyrocketed after the pandemic, with double-digit growth in its most recent third quarter, according to Estée Lauder. It was due to the new fragrance launches, including Rose D’Amalfi and “hero franchises” such as Oud Wood and Ombré Leather. Prestige skincare is the fastest growing division for Estée Lauder, but Tom Ford Beauty is essentially a luxury fragrance brand. Still, it also includes color cosmetics, men’s grooming products, and skincare. The beauty giant also bought out Korean skincare brandy Dr. Jart in 2019; and, in 2021, took a majority stake in a Canadian beauty brand, Deciem in a tiered purchase for $1 billion. 

Last season, Tom Ford canceled its runway presentation because of Covid-19-related issues. The brand is expected to close New York Fashion Week on September 14. Then, in May, he stepped down as the head of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.

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