PARIS – French luxury skin care brand Cible Skin has received significant minority investment from Verlinvest.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The investment was made to help the science-backed skin care brand accelerate growth across markets such as Europe, China, the U.S. and South America, as well as to develop new products and treatments based on its patented immune-cosmetic approach.
Cécile Chevallier, principal at Verlinvest, lauded Cible Skin for “the unique combination of very scientific, highest efficacy that you have on the formula, but also natural ingredients. It’s the unique sweet spot that they have in the space today. This is something that really excites us.”
“We truly believe that Cible Skin addresses what consumers are looking for today, which is one, uniqueness, and two, experience,” she continued. Those qualities are also manifest in the brand’s products and treatments.
Cible Skin was founded by Raphaël Aknin, a pharmaceutical doctor, and Jean Ginefri, an entrepreneur, in 2015.
Verlinvest was drawn to the executives’ complimentary profiles. “Their ambition is without limit,” added Chevallier.
“Since Day One, Cible Skin’s mission was to create a [luxury] skin care brand that uses the science of cell immunity rejuvenation to produce the most potent results,” explained Ginefri.
Aknin had developed skin immunity techniques while researching cancer.
The brand’s 12 face care products, with cleansers, serums and moisturizers, have formulas including natural, clean active ingredients. For their conception, a scientific committee analyzed data from 6,000 faces over three years. The products took five years to conceive before they were launched at the end of 2022.
Aknin chairs the committee, whose members have decades of experience in regenerative medicine and immunological science to maintain the health, equilibrium and beauty of skin through immuno-cosmetics. According to the company, this worldwide patented approach bolsters skin cells’ immune system in order to protect, regenerate and repair skin with strong antiaging and ultra-moisturizing results.
“We take a rigorous, research-backed approach to developing high-quality formulation,” said Ginefri, explaining everything is developed in-house by Aknin and his team.
Ginefri said Cible Skin chose Verlinvest as its partner “because of our shared values. They have a long-term outlook like us, a very strong consumer DNA, and they understood — like in a second — the R&D priority, which is very important for our brand. We both share a growth mindset.”
Ginefri added that Verlinvest’s team has decades of deep consumer brand expertise and a network of advisers.
“They have a strong track record enabling and supporting international expansion with teams on the ground in the U.S., Europe and Asia,” he continued, referring to the fund. Ginefri also mentioned the success Verlinvest has had with some of its brands, such as Rémy Cointreau and Vita Coco.
Since Cible Skin products’ launch, the brand’s sales have grown rapidly, said Ginefri.
The brand also offers exclusive treatments in its elegant 6,460-square-foot flagship clinic, called La Maison Cible Skin, in Paris’ Golden Triangle, at 31 Rue François 1er, in the eighth arrondissement. It officially opened doors in June 2021.
Doctors there use high-tech machines from South Korea, Japan and Germany for diagnoses and to track skin’s progress. Treatments are made-to-measure.
In early January, Cible Skin inaugurated the Appartements Particuliers, on the third floor, doubling its size.
Today, the brand’s products are sold on its own platform, cibleskin.com, and in its flagship. They will soon be retailed in the top 10 percent doors in France’s pharmacy channel.
Prices include 29 euros for a 120-ml. purifying and moisturizing gel, 95 euros for a 20-ml. eye serum and 580 euros for the multistep intensive antiaging treatment-cure.
Cible Skin’s most recent geographic launch was China, starting in March 2023, when it opened an office in Shanghai. Subsequently, the brand has generated multimillion dollars in sales.
Chevallier said the brand’s geographic white space is completely untapped at present. “International, branding and digital are what is true to Verlinvest values and expertise,” she said.
Verlinvest is an international, family-backed investment company, which was established in 1995. It has offices in Brussels, London, New York, Mumbai and Singapore. The company focuses on the fast-moving consumer goods, health, consumer technology and lifestyle categories.
Verlinvest’s portfolio has companies also including Oatly, Purplle.com, Tony’s Chocolonely and Clone. In beauty, Verlinvest, through its venture arm, has invested in K-beauty brand Yepoda, based in Berlin. The fund has also invested in French personalized supplements company Cuure, among others.
“We love to create close relationships with our founders and like to help them become global category leaders, which is clearly an ambition with Cible Skin,” said Chevallier.