P&G terminates plan to acquire razor startup Billie following FTC lawsuit – TechCrunch

Procter & Gamble will not acquire women’s beauty product startup Billy, As per earlier plan, After action by the US Federal Trade Commission to stop the action. In December, FTC sues to block P & G’s takeover New York-based startup Billy, a manufacturer of women’s razors and other beauty products, on the grounds that the merger would eliminate competition in the wet shave razor market.

Today, P&G and Billy issued a joint statement regretting the Commission’s decision to stop their merger, which led to the deal being terminated:

“We were disappointed by the FTC’s decision and retained the exciting potential in combining Billy with P&G to better serve more consumers worldwide. However, after due consideration, we have mutually agreed that it is not in the best interests of both companies to engage in a lengthy legal challenge, but rather to end our agreement and cancel our resources on other business priorities Is for. “

Billy had made a name for himself in the women’s razor market by offering to eliminate the so-called “pink tax”, which refers to how women’s products are often at higher price points than similar products aimed at men Is marked. It later expanded into the broader beauty market with a focus on more natural products, including sulfates, parabens, formaldehyde, GMOs, drying alcohols, synthetic dyes, fragrances, cheap foaming agents, volatile silicones and BHT additives and Are free of chemicals.

The startup was also successful in capturing the interest of a Millennial-aged consumer, particularly from a young, Gen Z, who responded to its mission as well as its modern and often progressive, marketing on social media and the web. In his commercials, Billy would Show women body hair – a message that went against the grain of traditional social expectations, where women are often featured in marketing messages – including razor ads – as already careless and sleek.

Billy’s message was that women should work irresponsibly about their body hair — because for those who like to shave, it would be a pleasure to sell a razor at an affordable price.

What also made Billy interesting was its business model. The company offers its customers to ship replacement blades on a subscription basis, which has helped in increasing revenue and customer loyalty.

Ahead of the P&G acquisition, Billy was planning to expand into physical retail stores, which would have made the brand a more direct competitor for P&G products, the FTC said.

“With its sales soaring, Billy was likely to expand into brick-and-mortar stores, posing a serious threat to P&G,” said Ian Conner, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition, in a statement released last month. “If P&G can take advantage of Billy’s rapid competitive growth, consumers will face higher prices,” he said.

As a result of the FTC’s actions, the companies opted to terminate their plans to oppose further legal action.

The FTC praised the decision in a release issued today.. Also Reuters Reported To end the decision of companies.

“The acquisition of Procter & Gamble is good news for consumers who value Billy’s acquisition for low price, quality and innovation,” the FTC statement read. “Billy is a direct-to-consumer company, whose ads target customers who are tired of paying more for comparable razors. The FTC voted to challenge this merger because it ended Billy’s dynamic competition. “

The FTC lawsuit was the second antitrust suit the agency filed in 2020, followed by a lawsuit to block Edgewell Personal Care (makers of shake razors). $ 1.37 Billion Deal to Acquire Razor Startup Harry, Inc., Another direct-to-consumer brand. As a result, the deal also fell through.