Coty Said to Renew Attempts to Buy Jequiti After Avon Bid Fails

Coty Inc., the perfume maker that dropped a takeover offer for Avon Products Inc. this year, has revived attempts to acquire Jequiti Cosmeticos, according to three people familiar with the matter.

Brazil’s Grupo Silvio Santos, which owns Jequiti, hired Barclays Plc to sell the brand, said the people, who asked not to be named because the talks are private. Jequiti is valued at about $500 million, the people said. Paris-based L’Oreal SA is also interested in Jequiti, one of the people said.

Coty, the maker of perfumes by Beyonce Knowles and Heidi Klum, had been interested in Jequiti before offering more than $10 billion to buy Avon, the worlds largest door-to-door cosmetics seller, one of the people said. After Avon failed to respond to the offer, New York-based Coty turned its sights back to Jequiti, the person said.

In June, Coty filed to raise as much as $700 million in an initial public offering. The company has been working to boost revenue by entering new regions and expanding distribution brands in emerging markets. Coty projects net revenue of more than $4.5 billion in the fiscal year 2012, according to a filing.

Coty and Jequiti would be a good pairing, said Vivienne Rudd, a personal-care industry analyst at Mintel International in London. Both companies sell to the mass market and Coty wants to enter Brazil, Rudd said.

“Brazil is the market where everyone is looking,” Rudd said in a phone interview. “Jequiti is building its own manufacturing plants, which would give Coty a manufacturing base in Brazil.”

Representatives at Jequiti, Coty, Barclays and L’Oreal declined to comment.

Coty, which holds perfume licenses for brands including Calvin Klein and Marc Jacobs, was founded in 1904 in Paris by Corsican-born Francois Coty. The company helped develop perfume into a mass product, with 36 million consumers two decades later.

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