Spanx sells majority stake to Blackstone
Shapewear brand Spanx has sold a majority stake in its business to the Blackstone private equity firm in deal that values the company at $1.2 billion.
Spanx was founded 21 years ago by Sara Blakeley when she invested $5,000 of her savings in taking on what she regarded as a male dominated shapewear and undergarment industry. The company has now expanded to offer figure-flattering outerwear, activewear and swimwear.
Following the acquisition, Blakeley said: “At Spanx, we have always put the customer at the centre of what we do. I am as excited today for the future of Spanx as I was when I started it 21 years ago. Now together with Blackstone, we will have even more opportunity to further our mission of making the world a better place… one butt at a time.”
Blakeley will retain a significant equity stake in the business and will continue to oversee daily operations. She will also become executive chairwoman at closing.
The acquisition will enable Spanx to accelerate its digital transformation, boost its online presence and expand its global footprint. It will also be used to develop new products across more categories. In addition, the company is planning to create an all-female board of directors.
Ann Chung, global head of consumer for Blackstone Growth, said: “Sara is an iconic businesswoman who bootstrapped Spanx into not only a category creator and household name, but also a symbol of authenticity, confidence building and female empowerment.
“We’re honoured that Sara and her team have placed their trust in Blackstone as their partner of choice to further accelerate Spanx’s digital transformation and growth and look forward to what the business will achieve with our full set of resources behind it.”