In 2013, Tristan Walker launched Walker & Company Brands with the dream of becoming the next health and beauty business designed for consumers of color. Now the CEO has the opportunity to grow his unique brand within consumer product giant Procter & Gamble.
Walker’s startup announced Wednesday that P&G had purchased the Black-owned brand, which is behind the popular Bevel men’s shaving products and Form hair care line. The company will make its biggest move yet, relocating its headquarters from the heart of Silicon Valley, Calif., to Atlanta.
Walker will remain acting CEO of the company but will report directly to Alex Keith, president of P&G’s global hair care and beauty business.
Although the firms have remained mum on the financial terms of the deal, a source familiar with the details said investors had recouped a majority of the $40 million they invested in Walker & Company, meaning P&G shelled out between $20 million and $40 million for the startup.
Crunchbase reported that Walker’s company had secured more than $33.3 million in funding in its first few years from investors like Google Ventures, Felicis Ventures and Melo7 Tech Partners.
“I never started this company to get wealthy; I started this company to serve,” Walker told Recode. “I started this company to realize that vision of making health and beauty simple for people of color. This accelerates that vision.”
So what’s in it for Walker? The acquisition will grant his company access to P&G’s extensive research and development expertise, marketing support (which P&G spent $7 billion on last year across all its brands), international retail relationships and supply chain efficiencies.
On the flip side, by taking Walker & Co. Brands under its wing, P&G will tap into an emerging market of health and beauty brands aimed at serving a growing multicultural consumer base. For the industry giant, Walker’s Bevel brand adds a line of men’s razors and grooming products meant to prevent skin issues, like unsightly razor bumps and irritation suffered by African-American men.
Walker’s FORM hair care line also brings something new to P&G, which owns mainstream shampoo brands Pantene and Head & Shoulders. FORM pegs itself as a brand “born from a global community of women of all ethnic backgrounds” that’s specifically designed to work across a variety of hair types and textures.
The new move looks to be beneficial for both companies as they work to grow their brands.
“We’ve always had the vision to make health and beauty simple for people of color,” Walker said. “But now we get to accelerate that vision with the many capabilities Procter & Gamble has to offer. I’m not going anywhere. We’re not going anywhere.”
Watch more in the clip below.