The Estée Lauder Companies Reaches Agreement to Acquire Tom Ford

The deal values the total Tom Ford enterprise at $2.8 billion.

After many weeks of speculation and talks, The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. has signed an agreement to acquire the Tom Ford brand. The deal will establish ELC, which was already a longstanding partner of the brand, as the sole owner of the Tom Ford brand and all its intellectual property.

The deal values the total enterprise at $2.8 billion. The amount to be paid by ELC for the acquisition is approximately $2.3 billion, net of a $250 million payment to ELC at closing from Marcolin S.p.A. ELC expects to fund this transaction through a combination of cash, debt and $300 million in deferred payments to the sellers that become due beginning in July 2025.

Under the agreement, Tom Ford, founder and CEO of Tom Ford International, will continue to serve as the brand’s creative visionary after closing and through the end of calendar 2023. Domenico De Sole, chairman of Tom Ford International, will stay on as a consultant until that same time.

The deal will also extend and expand the Tom Ford brand’s longstanding relationship with Ermenegildo Zegna N.V. to include a long-term license for all men’s and women’s fashion as well as accessories and underwear. As part of this transaction, Zegna will acquire operations of the Tom Ford fashion business necessary to perform its obligations as licensee. ELC and Zegna will align closely on the creative direction to continue building on the luxury positioning of the Tom Ford brand.

The brand’s current license with Marcolin, one of the leading global eyewear manufacturers, will also be substantially extended.

Positioning Tom Ford Beauty for Further Growth

Tom Ford Beauty, first introduced by ELC in 2006, is a luxury beauty brand with a highly differentiated collection of fragrance, makeup, and skin care. Established with an initial luxury fragrance, Tom Ford Beauty has since grown into one of the most successful and aspirational beauty brands in the world.

We are incredibly proud of the success Tom Ford Beauty has achieved in luxury fragrance and makeup and its dedication to creating desirable, high-quality products for discerning consumers around the world,” said Fabrizio Freda, president and chief executive officer, The Estée Lauder Companies. “As an owned brand, this strategic acquisition will unlock new opportunities and fortify our growth plans for Tom Ford Beauty. It will also further help to propel our momentum in the promising category of luxury beauty for the long-term, while reaffirming our commitment to being the leading pure player in global prestige beauty.”

Tom Ford Beauty is strongly positioned in the luxury fragrance and makeup categories, areas that are expected to outperform industry growth over the coming years. This strategic acquisition supports the next level of growth for Tom Ford Beauty in key markets for luxury and online channels globally.

The brand has delivered impressive success, including growing strong double-digit net sales on a compound annual basis from fiscal years 2012 through 2022. In ELC’s fiscal year ended June 30, 2022, Tom Ford Beauty achieved nearly 25% net sales growth as compared to the prior year, and over the next couple of years, ELC expects that the brand will achieve annual net sales of one billion dollars. The brand continues to have strong momentum across channels and key markets resulting in a prestige fragrance ranking in the top 15 in the United States and top 10 in China. The brand has received over twenty awards from The Fragrance Foundation.

BEAUTY PACKAGING

An Exclusive Look at Isamaya Ffrench’s Debut Make-Up Collection

Isamaya Ffrench is sitting at an outside table at London’s The Maine, a stone throw’s from Vogue’s HQ. It’s a particularly sunny Spring day and everyone is full of cheer, which makes what she’s about to unveil that much more subversive. Taking its cues from the visual lexicon of BDSM culture – the lids of two serums and a mascara come skewered with wearable hard metal piercings, while a bound rubbery figure emerges from a 14 pan eyeshadow palette – Isamaya’s first make-up collection (the Industrial collection), for her brand new beauty brand, Isamaya, and its accompanying Steven Klein-lensed campaign, is as much a statement about the beauty industry as it is about beauty. Because Isamaya isn’t your typical beauty brand: it’s not selling you some repackaged notion of beauty in the traditional sense, nor is it relying on tired millennial tropes to appeal to a younger audience. It’s simply about providing the tools for people to express themselves in a way that’s incredibly freeing. “Everyone’s always banging on about make-up to transform yourself,” says Ffrench. “I’ve done the transformation thing, and I get it. But actually, I think make-up is a tool to return to who you are. And I think this collection could speak to people that can be more of their authentic self with this style of make-up, as opposed to like, a pretty girly blusher or something else.

Welcome to Artist Spotlight #82 series on my blog.

But to focus on the visuals and underlying message alone would be to undermine what she’s managed to do in terms of the products. Because this is where the true ingenuity lies. A five-piece drop comprising a mascara, eyeshadow palette, glow serum, lip lacquer and brow laminator, Isamaya has worked tirelessly with her lab to create innovative textures and boundary-pushing formulas; a mascara that doesn’t just give you the effect of fuller lashes, but actually nourishes them to promote growth; an eyeshadow putty that melts with your body temperature to make it more blendable; a glow serum that doesn’t just contain pearlescent particles for a superficial dewiness, but also active ingredients that stimulate collagen production, creating a much deeper, more intense radiance. After years of lending her prowess to brands including Tom Ford, Christian Louboutin, Burberry – where she remains global beauty director – and Byredo, Isamaya is executing her unique vision of beauty on her own terms, and without any commercial shackles. The result is a lesson in unrestrained creativity that feels truly Isamaya. “I look at these products and I think, ‘That’s just so much more me than any other products I’ve ever seen in my life,’” she muses. “Maybe other people will be able to connect to it as well.”

Below, Vogue takes a closer look at the collection.

Industrial Skinlacq Triple Hyaluronic Glow Serum

A pearlescent lacquer for the face, but without any added sparkle, the Industrial Skinlacq Triple Hyaluronic Glow Serum is ideal for creating that glass skin look. Using a triple hyaluronic acid complex, along with cell-energising peptides, it also works to nourish and reinvigorate the skin, which was key for Isamaya. “I didn’t just want a glowy serum that doesn’t do anything else,” she says. “If I’m going to use this on my face every day, as the perfect base for my make-up, I wanted that first point of contact to be moisturising and moisture-locking.” Bottled up beautifully in a glass orb, replete with a pipette and hard metal piercing, it will bring an edge to any bathroom cabinet.

Industrial Rubberlash Latex Lift Mascara

A true example of make-up artistry and invention, the Industrial Rubberlash Latex Lift Mascara doesn’t just make your lashes look fuller and longer, it actually curls them too. “The lab created this mesh-like texture to encapsulate the lash,” Ffrench says. “It has this kind of elastic property that pulls the lashes back so you don’t need to curl your lashes.” Using three separate pigments, two black and one blue, to create an ultra black lash, it gives that coveted false lash impression, while conditioning oils nourish to encourage growth.

Industrial Liplacq Maximising Lip Serum

Described as a veil for the lips, the Industrial Liplacq Maximising Lip Serum uses a blend of coffee and ginger root oil to create a plumping effect, while its deep berry hue and almost inky texture add a sense of depth. This isn’t your average lip offering. “I wanted to create something that makes your lips a couple of shades darker because I think it’s quite sexy, quite goth,” she says. “I don’t want it to look like you’re wearing any product, though, it just deepens your natural tone with a kind of greyish, veiny tint.

Industrial Browlacq Brow Laminator

A multi-use brow lacquer, apply one lick of this hard-wearing, hard-working gel to your brows and it will hold them in place from day to night and right through to the morning after. Perfect for styling or giving that laminating effect, it contains glycerin and humectants to nourish the hairs as well. “For all the drag queens out there, you can use this to stick your brows down and then cover with foundation, and then you have no brows,” she adds. It’s also good for kiss curls.

Industrial Colour Pigments Eyeshadow Palette

Taking inspiration from industrial hues – oil slick greys and chrome silvers – but with the odd flash of acidic colour, the 14 pan palette is a mix of special effect pearls, mattes, and press putties – demi-wet textures that activate at body temperature so they blend more easily. They look just as exquisite together as they do individually. There’s a particularly arresting violet that looks almost holographic on the skin. Isamaya recommends it for cooling down your highlights, while a silver pressed metallic gives a foil-like effect. “It’s all about the textures,” she says. “They look really interesting in different lights, and photograph really beautifully.

VOGUE