Holland & Barrett acquired by Russian billionaire for £1.8bn

Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman’s investment vehicle agreed to buy Holland & Barrett, one of the largest health-food retail chains in Europe, from private equity owner Carlyle Group LP for about 1.8 billion pounds ($2.3 billion).L1 Retail managing partner Stephan DuCharme said: “Holland & Barrett is a clear market leader in the United Kingdom health and wellness retail market, with attractive growth positions in other European and worldwide markets, and growing online presence, with a leading customer loyalty programme and 10 million active cardholders”.Holland & Barrett was founded in 1870 and employs more than 4,200 staff.L1 Retail, a fund controlled by Mikhail Fridman, is buying the chain from USA private equity firm Carlyle.Holland & Barrett is part of Nature’s Bounty Co.Carlyle Group bought Nature’s Bounty, the owner of Holland & Barrett, in 2010 for $3.8 billion. Its annual revenues previous year exceeded £610 million.”We look forward to building on this track record as we enter the next chapter with L1 Retail”.”We will create a board that features the best possible combination of skills to support the leadership team and take Holland & Barrett to the next level”, he said.This year Latham has advised Carlyle on its €400m (£351m) acquisition of Italian fashion brand Golden Goose Deluxe Brand, as well as its $400m (£314m) investment in ION Investment Group, a global provider of mission-critical software to financial institutions and corporates.The Holland & Barrett deal is expected to close in September 2017.