Lush and Silverwood Brands clash over sale of shares
Lush has come head-to-head with consumer goods group Silverwood Brands months after it snapped up a stake in the skincare retailer.
In December 2022, Silverwood entered into a sale and purchase agreement for a 19.8 percent stake in both Lush Cosmetics Limited and Cosmetic Warriors Limited – collectively known as Lush – for a total consideration of 216.8 million pounds.
However, in February 2023, it was announced that Lush had declined to record the transfers of the shares to the company’s subsidiary, Cosmic Circles.
Silverwood said in a filing with the London Stock Exchange that Lush, at first, had not provided a reason for the move, but later issued one which Silverwood has ultimately rejected, leading the group to now instruct solicitors to take up the issues with Lush.
The filing further noted: “Silverwood is comfortable with its position and will continue to take appropriate steps to protect its interests.”
Now, Lush has reportedly filed a complaint with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) against Silverwood, which is owned by former Lush head Andrew Gerrie, and its attempts to transfer the shareholding in the retailer.
Gerrie, who initially joined Lush following the company’s founding, was handed shares in the business that came with specified conditions, including that of the Lush board’s right of first refusal in the decision to sell and that shares must be paid for in cash at an independently verified valuation.
Gerrie is currently looking to move his stake in Lush to the Aquis-listed Silverwood Brands.
According to The Telegraph, Lush alleged that Gerrie misled the stock market about the viability of the transfers and said Silverwood made misleading claims that it declined to the transfer request “without reason”.
In a statement on its own corporate site, Lush said it had declined the transfer as the shares offered to Silverwood did not match those previously offered to remaining shareholders, while the legal and beneficial interests in the shares were also not permissible.