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damani: Radhakishan Damani buys Health & Glow for ₹750 cr

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Radhakishan Damani, billionaire investor and founder of Avenue Supermarts that runs the D-Mart chain, has acquired Health and Glow, a Bangalore-based beauty and personal care retail chain from the family offices of Rajan Raheja and Hemendra Kothari for ₹700-750 crore, said people in the know.

Industrialist Rajan Raheja, with interests in cement, tiles, financial services and automotives, owns Exide Batteries, Raheja QBE General Insurance, a joint venture between his listed company Prism Johnson and Australia’s QBE Insurance and Outlook publishing Group. He sold a majority stake in his cable TV venture Hathaway to Reliance Industries.

Veteran investment banker Hemendra Kothari chairs DSP Investment Managers, which has $15 billion in assets under management. He founded the firm in 2008 in partnership with BlackRock, but bought out the Wall Street asset manager’s stake 10 years later. He also partnered with Merrill Lynch in 1995 but sold his 57% stake in tranches between 2005 and 2009.

Bombay Swadeshi
This would be Damani’s second buyout ever after Bombay Swadeshi Stores in 2015, the country’s oldest retailer that counted freedom fighters Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Mummohandas Ramji and industrialist JRD Tata as its founding fathers, for ₹42 crore.

The transaction was done via Damani’s flagship investment vehicle Bright Star Investments. The transaction, thus far kept private, was signed late last week.

According to corporate shareholding data available till June 2023, Damani, Damani publicly holds 14 stocks with a net worth over ₹166,949.6 crore with the largest being VST Industries where he is the single largest shareholder and India Cements, where his 21% ownership makes him the single largest public (non-promoter group) investor. Apart from being an investor in His other retail sector exposure is in Trent, the chain backed by Tata Group.

Among the earliest specialised beauty and personal care retailers, the 26-year old chain was originally a joint venture between Spencer Retail and Hong Kong-based Dairy Farm. The duo also launched Food World which was subsequently sold to Kishore Biyani of Future Group. With Spencer and Dairy Farm both exiting their initial alliance over the years, in 2015-16, Kothari and Raheja bought out the Health and Glow chain, a year after FoodWorld got sold.

Radhakishan Damani buys health & glow for ₹750 cr

Health and Glow
Launched in 1997, Health and Glow opened its first brick-and-mortar store in Chennai. The business now has a network of over 175 stores located across Indian cities including Bengaluru, Mangaluru, Pune, Mumbai, Cochin, Kolkata, Bhopal, Bhubaneshwar, and Hyderabad among other locations. In FY22, the company clocked ₹200 crore topline and is expected to close FY23 with Rs 370 crore of sales with a 15% Ebitda margin.

In an earlier interview, the company’s management said the key focus will primarily harp on – personalisation, omnichannel presence, innovation in efficacious products.

“The challenge will be to make it a pan India brand and make it truly omni-channel. It is still primarily a physical format.” said an official in the know.

Representatives of Damani’s family office including, the chain’s CEO and MD K Venkataramani did not respond to ET’s queries. Efforts to reach out to the Kothari and Raheja family office on their mobile phones remained unanswered. Arpwood, the advisor to the deal, was also unavailable.

The beauty and personal care market of India is estimated to be $18.3 billion by the end of the 2023 calendar year, according to market research firm Euromonitor International. But newer, well funded players like Nykaa have dominated the sector in the recent past which is increasingly seeing consolidation of brands or bigger conglomerates making an entry.

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