Linklaters and Davis Polk lead as L'Oreal nears €1bn sale of The Body Shop to Brazil's Natura

Linklaters, David Polk & Wardwell and Baker McKenzie are advising as French cosmetics company L’Oreal plans to sell The Body Shop to Brazilian rival Natura Cosmeticos, which owns the Aesop brand.

On Friday (9 June), L’Oreal announced that it had entered into exclusive discussions with Natura and had received a firm offer that valued The Body Shop at €1bn (£877m).

Linklaters is acting for L’Oreal, with a team led by corporate partner Vincent Ponsonnaille, who is based in Paris and London, and Paris corporate partner Laurent Victor-Michel. They are being supported by London high-yield partner Alexander Naidenov and corporate counsel Christopher Yip in Hong Kong.

Last year, Ponsonnaille co-led a team advising private equity firm BC Partners on buying a $1.6bn (£1.2bn) stake in an Israeli furniture maker.

Baker McKenzie is also acting for L’Oreal on the deal. Its team is being led by London funds partner James Burdett.

Davis Polk is acting for the buyer with a team consisting of Paris corporate partner Jacques Naquet-Radiguet, London corporate partner Will Pearce and corporate partner Manuel Garciadiaz, who splits his time between New York and Sao Paulo.

In 2006, Linklaters advised L’Oreal on its takeover of The Body Shop for £625m. Bakers advised The Body Shop on the deal, and has continued to act for the business and its parent company L’Oreal since the acquisition.

The Body Shop was founded in 1976 by Dame Anita Roddick. It obtained a full listing on the London Stock Exchange in the 1980s and went on to become well known for its anti-animal testing stance and its promotion of natural products.