Blyth Receives $269 Million Takeover Offer From Rochon’s CVSL

CVSL Inc. (CVSL), run by Mary Kay Inc.’s former chairman, offered to buy Blyth Inc. (BTH) for about $269 million to expand the number of direct-sales brands it operates.

CVSL has offered $16.75 a share in cash or CVSL shares, Blyth said in a statement today. CVSL proposed to buy Blyth for that amount in a letter to the company last week, two people with knowledge of the matter said yesterday. Though executives of the company met last week, they didn’t discuss a combination, Blyth said in today’s statement.

CVSL’s Chief Executive Officer John Rochon was chairman of Mary Kay -- the cosmetics seller known for giving pink Cadillacs to top sales representatives. Rochon, 62, took over Computer Vision Systems Laboratories Corp. in 2012 to create a new direct-sales business focused on the health, home and beauty sectors. The company has since acquired Tomboy Tools Inc. and Agel Enterprises LLC, which makes nutritional and skin-care products.

After gaining 21 percent yesterday, Blyth fell 1.4 percent to $15.28 as of 9:38 a.m. in New York trading today. CVSL rose 15 percent to 68 cents.

CVSL’s offer of $16.75 a share is a 31 percent premium to Blyth’s closing price of $12.76 on Oct. 25, the last trading day before the offer was reported. Before yesterday’s gain, the shares had fallen 18 percent this year.

Blyth, which sells candles, fragrances and ViSalus weight-loss products, said in August that revenue fell 32 percent to $211.7 million in the second quarter from a year earlier. The company, citing slumping sales of ViSalus, also cut its full-year earnings outlook at the time.

Rochon oversaw a sixfold increase in revenue to about $3 billion at Mary Kay from the time he led its leveraged buyout in 1985 to when he left in 2001. As the founder and chairman of Dallas-based Richmont Holdings Inc., he also mounted takeover attempts for competitor Avon Products Inc. (AVP) in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lauren Coleman-Lochner in New York at llochner@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Robin Ajello at rajello@bloomberg.net

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