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Reliance Retail in talks for Sephora’s India rights: Report

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Reliance Retail in talks to acquire Sephora’s India rights, says report. News18

Reliance Retail is in talks to acquire the India rights of beauty retailer Sephora, according to a report in the Mint. People familiar with the matter told the media outlet that the talks are at an advanced stage. The move comes as Reliance Retail is looking to expand its business. The company did not respond to any questions on the matter.

If the talks are successful, Sephora could move its operations in India from Arvind Fashions Ltd. to Reliance. Sephora has yet to comment on the reports. Arvind Fashions, who owns Sephora’s master franchise rights in the country, also declined to give any weight to the rumour. “As per company policy, we do not comment on market rumours and speculations,” a spokesperson said.

Reliance Retail has been on an expansion spree. The retail arm of Reliance Industries hopes to double its borrowing cap to Rs 1 lakh crore from Rs 50,000 crore. The company will take approval from shareholders for the same during its annual general meeting on 30 September.

Sephora is not the first French brand Reliance has been in talks with. The company had signed a long-term franchise deal with French fashion house Balenciaga earlier this year, as per Reuters.

Sephora’s business in India:

Sephora currently has 25 stores in 13 Indian cities, as per a filing by Arvind Fashions. The French multi-brand beauty products chain is owned by luxury brand LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton. Sephora is globally present in over 2,700 stores in 35 countries. The brand is known for retailing premium perfumes and beauty products of companies like Lancome, Bobbi Brown and more.

Prior to tying up with Arvind Fashions in 2015, Sephora’s rights were with DLF Brands, the retail arm of real-estate company DLF Ltd. Its operations were also managed by Delhi-based Genesis Colours, before the tie-up was strained in 2013.

Reliance’s big move in the cosmetics sector:
Reliance Retail is eying to get a foothold in the beauty and personal care market. The company is also hoping to establish a multi-brand beauty retail concept, with more mass brands, to compete with the beauty retailers like Nykaa. The beauty and personal care segment in India is poised for immense growth. According to a Motilal Oswal Financial Services Limited (MOFSL) report in 2021, the sector is expected to reach Rs 2 trillion by 2025.

(Disclaimer: Reliance Industries Ltd. is the sole beneficiary of Independent Media Trust which controls Network18 Media & Investments Ltd which publishes Firstpost)

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