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P&G’s Planned Billie Acquisition? Not So Fast, FTC Says

Executive Summary

Less than a year after the US FTC put the skids on Edgewell’s intended acquisition of Harry’s, it is intervening to stop P&G from buying women’s razor startup Billie. “If P&G can snuff out Billie’s rapid competitive growth, consumers will likely face higher prices,” FTC leadership says.

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P&G and women’s razor competitor Billie call off their proposed combination after the FTC made initial moves in December to prevent the deal, deeming it not in consumers’ interest. More cosmetics industry news in brief.

Edgewell Without Harry’s: Strategic Path Remains The Same, Just A Longer Road Now

One week after the FTC challenged the deal as anticompetitive, Edgewell announced on 10 February that it has terminated its merger agreement with direct-to-consumer upstart Harry’s. The firm remains focused on improving its underlying business and says its first-quarter results, posted the same day, show that its strategy is working.

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P&G has acknowledged that it was slow to react to direct-to-consumer threats in the men’s shave market. Perhaps intent on avoiding the same mistakes, the firm plans to acquire Billie, a subscription-based razor and body-care startup that has endeared itself to younger demographics with its affordable offerings and of-the-moment messaging.

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