Carlyle’s Sale Of Hair-Care Brand Marks 2016’s Latest Multibillion-Dollar PE Exit

Carlyle’s Sale Of Hair-Care Brand Marks 2016’s Latest Multibillion-Dollar PE Exit by Kevin Dowd, PitchBook

A little over two years after investing a reported $391 million for a 49% stake in Vogue International, The Carlyle Group has already lined up an eyebrow-raising sale. The firm announced Thursday that Johnson & Johnson Consumer would acquire Vogue, a producer and distributor of hair-care and personal-care products, in a $3.3 billion deal expected to close during 3Q.

The agreed-upon transaction is the latest PE exit in the U.S. valued at $2 billion or more. Some other significant examples this year are listed below.

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Notable multibillion-dollar exits by PE firms in 2016

As you can see, firms are favoring corporate acquirers rather than their peers in PE when it comes to selling off high-priced assets. IBM has been particularly active, with deals to acquire cloud-based healthcare data business Truven Health Analytics and the product and technology units of The Weather Channel. Big Blue reportedly plans to incorporate both companies’ technologies into its Watson supercomputer.

Another trend is emerging this year, too, with the largest PE exits seemingly concentrated in the B2C sector. Following the $4.6 billion secondary buyout of Petco, Carlyle’s sale of Vogue makes it two such deals in the year’s first five months that have exceeded $3 billion. Plenty of other slightly smaller deals have taken place in the space, including the sale of luggage maker Tumi from Doughty Hanson to Samsonite for about $2 billion and the exit by Calera Capital from mattress brand Sleepy’s at an aggregate price of $780 million.