Category: FAS

Asia Plantation Capital Poised to Develop the Agarwood Industry in Malaysia

SINGAPORE, Aug. 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Asia Plantation Capital (a sustainable plantation company) seeks to develop more opportunities for Agarwood as a beneficial crop in Malaysia.

Asia Plantation Capital at Bio Johor 2014

Asia Plantation Capital at Bio Johor 2014

 

Aquilaria Saplings in Nursery

Aquilaria Saplings in Nursery

Speaking at the biotechnology conference ‘Bio Johor 2014’, Dr Panamas Chetpattananondh (an Associate Professor from the Prince Songkla University in Thailand, and Head of the Scientific Advisory Board at Asia Plantation Capital) presented a plenary paper on the potential for Agarwood in Malaysia. Particular significance was given to the possibilities of utilising the advanced technologies developed by Asia Plantation Capital, and the opportunities that could be created in so doing.

With the value of Oud oil (that which comes from the specially treated wood of the tree), being significantly higher than the value of gold (by a factor of 1.5), the sustainable Agarwood industry is well established in Asia, with Asia Plantation Capital leading the way. The sustainable plantation company is now actively looking to bring their advanced plantation systems to Malaysia.

“Gaharu (Agarwood) is not new to the region and we see many opportunities for its growth in Malaysia. As a leading company in plantation management, we ensure that our agarwood is harvested ethically and sustainably,” said Steve Watts – Chief Executive Officer of Asia Plantation Capital Berhad – speaking at the Johor Biotech Conference. “Not only that,” he continued, “but we are one of the very few plantation companies to have our products certified by CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) which permits us to trade legally in Agarwood.”

Asia Plantation Capital is the main sponsor of the Bio Johor 2014 Biotechnology Conference and Exhibition. APC enjoyed the same privilege last year at the first International Scientific Symposium on Agarwood (ISSA) held in Malaysia, which was organised by Universiti Putra Malaysia.

Agarwood (or Gaharu, as it is more commonly known in Malaysia and Indonesia), comes from the Aquilaria tree – a species native to Southeast Asian countries such as Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Indonesia. What makes Agarwood so highly sought after is the rarity of the fragrant resin contained within. It is produced only when the tree is affected by a certain fungus (or, in the case of trees managed by Asia Plantation Capital, when treated in a specific way).

Oud oil and Oud wood chips have been an integral part of Middle Eastern cultures for centuries, where it is not only used in fragrances, but also in the wood chips burned in homes as incense. In China, Agarwood sculptures are common residential artefacts, and wearing bracelets made of Agarwood beads is fast becoming a popular trend, with recent record prices at auction having been achieved in China for Agarwood pieces.

Globally, Oud is now a major ingredient in the perfume and cosmetic industry, and is used by almost all of the world’s leading, luxury fragrance brands. Asia Plantation Capital’s partner company, Fragrance Du Bois, recently had one of its perfumes shortlisted as a top 10 finalist in the Art and Olfaction Awards (the fragrance industry ceremony held in Los Angeles, USA) matching up with and surpassing competitors from around the world.

The health benefits of Agarwood have been well documented, and have been a mainstay of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for hundreds of years. Agarwood is renowned to be beneficial in the treatment of digestive system disorders, the relief of spasms and pain, as well as tightness in the chest, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea and asthma.

Recent research has shown that, potentially, Agarwood has even more medicinal benefits, with the oil having been found to have sedative effects, while a component shows promise for use in the development of an anti-cancer drug. Antioxidant properties have also been found in the extract of Agarwood leaves, which may also be used for the treatment of stomach complaints and skin infections.

“I have spent nine years researching and developing the extraction methods of Agarwood oil to produce better quality oil, and it has made me realise that there is always more to be discovered with this amazing tree,” said Dr Chetpattananondh. She continued, “The sustainable plantation of Agarwood trees could be very valuable to the Malaysian agriculture industry. One significant advantage is that Agarwood grows very well when partnered with banana and other interpolated crops and trees.” The Asia Plantation Capital Scientific Advisory Board is now working with academics across Asia to develop and produce pharmaceuticals from Agarwood for wider use in traditional medicine.

All species of the Aquilaria tree are classified under CITES as endangered species – due to extensive and illegal logging and harvesting for Oud oil. Asia Plantation Capital’s Oud oil and woodchip products are all legally certified under the CITES agreement, ensuring that the strictest ethical and legal standards are upheld in the planting, growing and harvesting of Agarwood and Oud oil.

Moving forward, Asia Plantation Capital has plans to explore further opportunities by acquiring plantations (or partnering existing plantation owners) to develop Agarwood in Malaysia. Over the last 10 years, Asia Plantation Capital has developed advanced proprietary inoculation systems that have been implemented in Thailand, Cambodia and India (with proven results) as well as a new, patented system which, over a longer time frame, will stimulate resin production throughout the entire tree.

Notes to Editors:

About Asia Plantation Capital

Asia Plantation Capital is an owner and operator of a diverse range of commercial plantation and farming businesses across the Asia-Pacific region, and globally, is part of the Asia Plantation Capital Group of associated companies. Its focus is on multicultural and diverse plantation projects geared to the domestic and commercial demands of the countries in which they operate. Working closely with, and supporting local communities, is an underlying core principle of the APC business, providing social and cultural support, as well as investment, to move these communities away from deforestation and illegal logging activities, previously seen as a main source of income in some regions of Asia. Established officially in 2008 (although operating privately since 2002) the group now has plantation and agricultural projects on four continents with operational projects at various stages in Thailand, Malaysia, China, Laos, India, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Mozambique, The Gambia, North America and Europe.

Promoting the use of certified wood is the best way of preventing deforestation, thereby protecting biodiversity and combatting poverty in the tropical rainforest regions. For the yachting sector, which strives for excellence and which is already involved in environmental efforts, this is also a way of ensuring that no wood from illegal logging is used.

About Fragrance Du Bois

Fragrance Du Bois is a niche luxury perfume house working closely with sustainable plantations inAsia, bringing exciting new 100% organic Oud oil based fragrances to exclusive markets worldwide. Sustainably sourcing the finest raw materials across the globe, working with French perfumers to create a full range of products, and also providing bespoke fragrance services, Fragrance Du Bois is personal luxury with a conscience. With exclusive fragrance lounges around the world, in Dubai, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore, Fragrance Du Bois creates only the finest experience in bespoke perfumery.

Fragrance Du Bois is known as Parfums Du Bois in France and in non-French speaking markets, as Fragrance Du Bois.

Asia Plantation Capital Pte. Ltd. 50 Collyer Quay, #06-05 OUE Bayfront, Singapore 049321
Tel: +65 6222 3386 | Fax: +65 6221 2197 | Email: pr@asiaplantationcapital.com

adidas Chooses Callcredit’s GMAP to Help with Expansion Strategy in China

SHANGHAI, Aug. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Global sports brand adidas has used the expertise of international retail planning experts GMAP Marketing Consulting (Shanghai) Ltd., part of Callcredit Information Group, to support in their China expansion strategy.

adidas already has 7,600 shops across 1,000 Chinese cities and intends to consolidate their location coverage in the major cities as well as increase their footprint in China by expanding to another 400 cities by the end of 2015, with special focus on opportunities in middle sized cities. With GMAP’s extensive data coverage in over 50 cities, including comprehensive mapping of both current and future retail locations, the newly established GMAP Shanghai team was chosen to help adidas understand and prioritise where expansion potential exists.

Headquartered in Leeds, UK, GMAP has over 25 years’ experience helping global organisations with retail network planning. With a strong existing client base in Asia Pacific, GMAP helps retailers identify target customers and develop optimal location strategies for store networks and expansion. GMAP Shanghai combines our global modelling expertise with a local team of analysts to help both international and domestic clients in China.

GMAP conducted a market analysis study, covering 45 cities in mainland China (tiers 1-3) as well as Hong Kong and Taiwan. The results were used to provide adidas with a complete picture of demand and supply, along with identifying the direction of consumer spending flows. Using expert modelling solutions, GMAP calculated the size of the market opportunity for sports and casual fashion in nearly 5,000 unique retail sub-centres, identifying which locations and malls within specific cities would offer the highest revenue prospects for expansion. To obtain the most accurate data, a physical survey of all locations, including current adidas and competitor stores, as well as new potential locations, was undertaken.

The result was a detailed roadmap identifying the most viable locations to target for store expansion. This included all existing retail centres and malls as well as a unique database of over 800 future retail developments coming on stream in the next year or two with recommendations on which would have the most retail potential.

Tom Brown, Retail Expansion Director, adidas China, commented, “Working with GMAP in China is like a breath of fresh air.”

Luke Whittam, Asia-Pacific Director, GMAP, added, “It was a pleasure to work with adidas in this exciting and dynamic market. It provided the opportunity to validate our well-developed approaches in a market with huge potential for so many innovative retailers.

About Callcredit Information Groupwww.callcredit.co.uk

Callcredit Information Group’s leading approach to deploying consumer information brings together experts across the fields of credit referencing, marketing services, interactive solutions and consultative analytics to provide clients with a range of innovative and effective products to discover new customers and to engage with current customers to optimise and increase profitability.

Products include award-winning fraud verification tools and database solutions to positively verify consumers, global operations to help expand businesses into new markets, digital solutions to improve the overall journey consumers make during interaction with a brand, customer handling to ensure consumer satisfaction at all levels and consumer marketing data and segmentation to improve understanding and targeting of customers and prospects.

Callcredit also offers products to assess a customer’s credit risk and affordability and its experts in collections and recoveries provide tailored debt recovery and tracing tools. The company’s market analysis and network planning function helps organisations develop profitable retail networks, and its tools in multi bureau, analytics and metrics work to provide fully assessed bureau data.

Logo – http://photos.prnasia.com/prnh/20140827/0861406149LOGO

China Fordoo Holdings Limited (Stock Code: 2399) Announces 2014 Interim Results

— Turnover Reached RMB766.2 Million

— Gross Profit Increased by 13.0% to RMB269.1 Million

HONG KONG, Aug. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — China Fordoo Holdings Limited (“Fordoo” or the “Company” and, together with its subsidiaries, the “Group”, Stock Code: 2399), a reputable menswear brand in the PRC, is pleased to announce its interim results for the period ended 30 June 2014 (the “period”).

During the period, benefited from the growing recognition of the Group’s “FORDOO” brand and an increase in the average wholesale price of products, the Group’s turnover increased to RMB766.2 million, representing an increase of 6.8% over the corresponding period last year (1H2013: RMB717.4 million). The expansion of distribution network further strengthened the profitability of the Group. Net profit increased by 8.5% to RMB128.7 million over the corresponding period in 2013. Basic and diluted earnings per share were RMB36 cents, representing an increase of 8.5% as compared to the corresponding period last year (1H2013: RMB33 cents).

Mr. Kwok Kin Sun, Executive Director, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board said, “In the first half of 2014, China’s economic growth continued to slowdown and the retail market remained weak. For the apparel retail industry, the total retail sales of garments, hats, footwear and knitwear recorded a 10.0% year-on-year increase, which was 1.9 percentage points lower than that of the corresponding period in 2013. Therefore, the Group adopted a prudent operation strategy and focused on improving the distribution channel management and enhancing product quality and design. We are very satisfied that the purchase orders from the sales fair held in March 2014 increased by 24% from the ones held in September 2013.”

Business Review

As a reputable menswear brand in the PRC, by product type, Fordoo continued to lead the market in the men’s trousers segment. In the first half of 2014, turnover from men’s trousers increased by 16.9% to RMB458.1 million as compared to the corresponding period last year (1H2013: RMB392.0 million). In addition, sales of trousers remained the major contributor to the total turnover with a proportion of 59.8%. In terms of product style, the Group maintained a healthy growth in the business formal and business casual series. The business casual series continued to be the largest turnover contributor to the Group with a proportion of 63.4% (1H2013: 61.1%).

The Group has been striving to optimize its retail and sales network for the sustainable business growth. As of 30 June 2014, the retail and distribution network of the Group further expanded to 52 distributors and 180 sub-distributors. During the period, the Group had a total 1,353 retail outlets (including 2 self-operated retail stores), representing a net increase of 53 retail outlets as at 31 December 2013, spanning over 240 cities and 31 provinces, autonomous regions and central government-administered municipalities in the PRC. The increase in retail outlets was a strategy to further penetrate into the markets in the second and third-tier cities.

In the first half of 2014, as part of the Group’s marketing and promotion plan to enhance and reinforce its brand image, the renovation of 41 existing stores had completed, and the plan for renovating another 59 stores by the end of the year remained on track. In addition, the Group continued to actively carry out regular advertising and promotion campaign through various channels, such as advertisements in fashion magazines, promotion activities in the internet and other media, as well as advertisements on large outdoor billboards in airports, highways and well-known department stores.

Prospects

Looking ahead to the second half of 2014, the Group sustains its cautiously optimistic view with respect to the growth of consumer demand in menswear market in China. It is confident that the ongoing urbanization and expanding middle class in China will generate a strong demand on apparels in the long run. Therefore, the Group maintains its target for distributors of adding approximately 200 retail outlets within the year. In the coming 2014 spring/summer sales fair to be held in September 2014, the Group will launch a new casual fashion line targeting young customers aged 18 to 30.

Mr. Kwok concluded, “Fordoo will strive to seize the opportunities arising from the continuous growth of the men’s casual wear and trousers market in PRC, as well as strengthen its cooperation with the distributors and sub-distributors. The Group will equip itself for the future development through enhancing its product design and development capability and kicking off the implementation of the ERP system. Driven by the success of men’s trousers, business formal and business casual series, it is believed that the Group could continue its sustainable growth and maximize shareholders’ returns.”

– End –

About China Fordoo Holdings Limited

Fordoo is a reputable menswear brand in the PRC. Positioned in the middle-upper menswear segment, Fordoo primarily targets men aged 30 to 60. According to Frost & Sullivan, Fordoo brand was ranked sixth in the middle-upper menswear market with a market share of 2.9%, fifth in both the middle-upper business casual menswear segment and the middle-upper business formal menswear segment with respective market share of 4.0% and 2.9%, and second in the men’s trousers category with a market share of 3.0%, all of which were in terms of retail sales in 2013. Fordoo manages and operates the business through a strategically integrated model, comprising brand management and marketing, design and product development, ordering process, procurement of raw materials, self-production and outsourced production and sales and distribution. As of 30 June 2014, Fordoo’s distribution network comprised of 52 distributors, 180 sub-distributors and 1,353 retail outlets (excluding the two self-operated stores).

Issued by Porda Havas International Finance Communications Group for and on behalf of China Fordoo Holdings Limited.

SCMP Group Launches EsquireHK.com

First and Only International Men’s Fashion & Lifestyle Media Brand to Kick-start Multimedia Website in HK

HONG KONG, Aug. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — SCMP Group Ltd (SEHK: 583), Asia’s leading media holding company, today announced that it will launch EsquireHK.com on 1 September, establishing Esquire as the first and only international men’s fashion & lifestyle media brand with a localized multimedia online presence in Hong Kong. This follows the publication of Esquire’s Chinese version in January after SCMP Hearst Magazines Limited, a joint venture between SCMP Group and Hearst Magazines International, acquired its publication rights in Hong Kong.

Leveraging the resonance of the print edition’s lifestyle and fashion content, EsquireHK.com will enrich readers’ experience with a host of multimedia daily-refreshed channels on Style, Lifestyle, Watches, Food & Drinks, Machines, People and Esquire TV. The new website shares the signature brand essence and motif of its US counterpart esquire.com, while infusing Hong Kong and international editorial directions with local flair.  EsquireHK.com is powered by multi-talented online editorial specialists that create daily lifestyle & fashion news, reviews, tips, how-to guides and interviews using lively language, videos, photos, infographics and images.

SCMP Group announced that EsquireHK.com will be launched on 1 Sep, establishing Esquire as the first and only international men’s fashion & lifestyle media brand with a localized multimedia online presence in Hong Kong.

SCMP Group announced that EsquireHK.com will be launched on 1 Sep, establishing Esquire as the first and only international men’s fashion & lifestyle media brand with a localized multimedia online presence in Hong Kong.

Ms. Josephine Chan, Managing Director, SCMP Magazines Publishing Ltd said, “Through research and focus groups, we confirmed our belief that there is a dearth of men’s fashion and lifestyle websites with quality and original content in sync with what Hong Kong readers are looking for. EsquireHK.com helps us bridge this important market void, while strengthening our connection with readers, and importantly, building on the success that Esquire print has attained since the January launch.”

Ms. Chan added, “With daily updated content, EsquireHK.com will become indispensable to marketers and advertisers looking for an integrated men-focused advertising and promotion platform. In Esquire magazine and Esquirehk.com, they will be able to direct their promotional efforts to a high-value group of target audience that cares about style and substance.”

An online campaign titled “Are you THE MAN?” has preempted the website launch and introduced readers to Esquire HK’s brand essence – modern, sophisticated, confident and detailed.  Created by the EsquireHK.com team, the campaign is making a splash with visitors, some of whom heard about it from Esquire’s HK Facebook page. The campaign challenges site visitors to test their understanding of “Lifestyle, Style, Workplace and Party”. Registered participants who submit outstanding answers will win special prizes. The campaign www.esquireHK.com/areyoutheman will end on September 7.

About SCMP Group Ltd and South China Morning Post

SCMP Group Limited (SEHK: 583) is a leading newspaper and magazine publisher in Asia. Its flagship publication, South China Morning Post, is Hong Kong’s internationally recognised English language newspaper and has the city’s most affluent and influential readership.

First published in 1903, the newspaper has developed an enviable reputation for authoritative, influential and independent reporting on Hong Kong, Mainland China and the rest of Asia. Available in print, mobile, tablets and online through scmp.com and e-reader editions, South China Morning Post reaches a global audience with daily breaking news, analysis and opinion, multimedia articles and interactive forums. The South China Morning Post received over 160 awards in 2013-14 for excellence in editorial, marketing and technical capability.  Other titles in the Group include the Sunday Morning Post, Nanzao.com, Nanzaozhinan.com, STYLE, Destination Macau, The PEAK, HK Magazine, The List, Where Hong Kong, and Where Chinese.

Through the joint venture partnership with Hearst, SCMP Hearst publishes the Chinese editions of Cosmopolitan, CosmoBride, Harper’s BAZAAR, Harper’s BAZAAR Art, Harper’s BAZAAR Bride, Esquire, ELLE, ELLE Men, ELLE Wedding, ELLE Decoration, and ELLE Accessories; and operates Cosmopolitan.com.hk, Cosmogirl.com.hk, Harpersbazaar.com.hk, ELLE.com and EsquireHK.com in Hong Kong.

For further information please contact:              

+852-2680-8888
communications@scmp.com

Photo – http://photos.prnasia.com/prnh/20140826/8521404785

Cole Haan Unveils Exclusive ZeroGrand shoes with award-winning global retailer MR PORTER.COM

NEW YORK, Aug. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Cole Haan, the iconic American lifestyle footwear and accessories brand and retailer, today announces an exclusive release with MR PORTER.COM, the award-winning global retail destination for men’s style. The assortment of six styles consists of the ZeroGrand Wing Ox and two silhouettes designed exclusively for the retailer, the new ZeroGrand Chukka and ZeroGrand Tassel Loafer.

“MR PORTER is the most innovative online men’s shop in the world. It only made sense to bring our most innovative product to them. Upon seeing ZeroGrand, we immediately set to work with them to tailor ZeroGrand to the discerning MR PORTER customer,” remarked David Maddocks, Chief Marketing Officer at Cole Haan.

Cole Haan partnered with MR PORTER to determine all details in this new iteration of dress and casual footwear. The result is a masculine palette that easily coordinates with every man’s wardrobe. The styles all feature an Ivory outsole, which is a main characteristic within the collection.

Expanding on ZeroGrand’s collision of innovation and craft, the unlined shoes use reverse full-grain uppers, a luxurious suede from the long-standing British tannery Charles F. Stead. Each lightweight pair in the collection makes for a perfect Pre-Fall choice, that easily transitions into cooler seasons. Originally launched in July 2014, ZeroGrand features Cole Haan’s new “operating system,” Grand.OS, which delivers greater flexibility, reduced weight and increased cushioning in products that move easily from work to weekend with ease.

“Cole Haan is an exciting new addition to MR PORTER, and we’ve worked with them to produce some exclusive styles on the new ZeroGrand sole unit. Our customer is always looking for something new, and this will be our first offering of a classic shoe x sneaker hybrid,” says Sam Lobban, Senior Buyer at MR PORTER.

Available from mrporter.com starting August 26, the ZeroGrand Chukka ($278) will come in Ivy and Mushroom, the ZeroGrand Tassel Loafer ($268) will come in Mushroom and India Ink ($268), and the ZeroGrand Wing Ox ($268) will come in Ironstone and Black.

For more information, contact:

Kimry Blackwelder, Cole Haan

Nick Troedson, MR PORTER

+1 (212) 763-3060

+1 (852) 3018-6076

kimry.blackwelder@colehaan.com

nick.troedson@mrporter.com

About Cole Haan:

Cole Haan LLC, with its Global Creative Center in New York City, is an iconic American lifestyle accessories brand and retailer of premium men’s and women’s footwear and bags, outerwear, eyewear and accessories with a commitment to craftsmanship, timeless style and design innovation. For more information, visit ColeHaan.com and follow @ColeHaan.

About MR PORTER:

MR PORTER is the award-winning global retail destination for men’s style, combining the best international menswear with editorial content.  The site sells over 200 leading international brands, with content and new products added weekly.  MR PORTER offers express worldwide shipping to 170 countries (including same day delivery to London and New York), and a free collection service for returns and exchanges.  For more information, visit mrporter.com.

Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140820/138291
Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140820/138296

Natural Beauty Announces 2014 Interim Results

Turnover Rose 22.1% to HK$248.5 Million

Contribution from Higher-margin Products Drove

Gross Margin Improvement

HONG KONG, Aug. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Natural Beauty Bio-Technology Limited (“Natural Beauty” or the “Group”; Stock Code: 00157), the leading professional skin-care, spa services and beauty training provider in China, announced today its interim results for the six months ended 30 June 2014.

For the six months ended 30 June 2014, turnover of the Group grew 22.1% to HK$248.5 million year-on-year (1H2013: HK$203.6 million), driven by an increase in product sales as a result of higher store productivity in Mainland China and Taiwan. Overall gross profit margin improved to 76.7%, as contribution from higher-margin products increased within the Group’s sales mix during the period (1H2013: 75.9%). Profit for the period amounted to HK$29.7 million for the six months ended 30 June 2014 (1H2013: HK$36.2 million). Earnings per share were 1.48 HK cents (1H2013: 1.81 HK cents). The Board recommended to distribute an interim dividend of 2.1 HK cents per share, equivalent to a dividend payout ratio of 141.5%.

Despite the economic growth slowdown in the Mainland China, turnover in the Mainland China market rose by 25.3% to HK$201.8 million for the six months ended 30 June 2014. The growth was driven by increase in sales of products, mainly due to the pilot-testing of “direct-own retail” management system to exercise better control over franchisees in order to drive higher store productivity. During the first half of 2014, gross margin on product sales was up 2.4 percentage points to 81.2%. Turnover for the Taiwan market also registered growth of 11.7% to HK$44.4 million, as the Group adopted door-by-door management via franchisee differentiation to utilize company resources efficiently. Gross margin on product sales expanded 3.5 percentage points to 82.4%. The gross margin improvement in both Mainland China and Taiwan was a result of higher sales contribution from higher-margin products such as NB-1, and lower promotion discounts during the period under review. On the other hand, sales in other regions, including Hong Kong, Macau and Malaysia, decreased 17.9% to HK$2.3 million for the six months ended 30 June 2014, accounting for an insignificant 0.9% of the Group’s turnover.  

The Group derives its income principally from its network of distribution channels, including spas and concessionary counters in department stores. As at 30 June 2014, there were 1,358 spas and 14 concessionary counters. A total of 11 new stores were opened and 72 stores were closed during the six months ended 30 June 2014.

During the period, average sales per store of the Group amounted to HK$179,000 (1H2013: HK$138,000), of which average sales per store in the Mainland China grew 32.6% to HK$183,000, while average sales per store in Taiwan increased by 20.6% to HK$164,000.

The Group puts significant emphasis on research and development which allows it to maintain its competitive edge by continuously improving the quality of its existing products and developing new products. The Group has been collaborating with overseas skin-care companies on technological development, drawing on the experience of its team of experts to continually create high-quality beauty and skin care products. During the six months ended 30 June 2014, nearly 191,395 sets/bottles of the Group’s flagship NB-1 family products were sold with turnover amounting to HK$101.3 million, accounting for more than one-third of the Group’s total product sales during the period. The Group has also collaborated with a leading researcher in the field of human genome and stem cell technology. The stem cell technology is patented in the United States to protect the uniqueness of the NB-1 products.

Ms. Karen Chang, Chief Executive Officer of the Group said, “In 2014, the beauty and personal care sector maintained better than GDP growth and we are pleased to have achieved a much higher growth than the industry. Our growth is mainly attributed to the improved channel quality by implementing ‘direct-own retail’ management methodology to drive much higher door productivity. In order to maintain the encouraging growth momentum, we will strengthen trainings provided to our franchisees to ensure their operational quality. We also rationalize our products lines by relaunching NB-1 Revital products to increase the penetration of home care. We will press on with our prudent growth strategy, and strive to strengthen our position as a leading skin care brand and spa operator in the Greater China Region, so as to generate better returns for our shareholders.”

– End –

About Natural Beauty Bio-Technology Limited

Natural Beauty is a leading beauty and spa services and products provider in Greater China. The Group principally offers tailor-made beauty and skin care solutions through its trained professional beauticians. The Group is engaged in research and development, manufacture and sale of skin care, aroma-therapeutic and beauty products, marketed under the brandname “NB®”. The products are distributed through a distribution network of over 1,300 NB’s SPAs and dedicated counters in Greater China.

TOMS Partners With Bain Capital To Accelerate Growth And Increase Scale Of One For One™ Movement

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 21, 2014  /PRNewswire/ — TOMS, the company that turned the idea of One for One™ into a global movement, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to partner with Bain Capital, a leading global private investment firm, to accelerate the growth of the company and its giving programs around the world. TOMS Founder and Chief Shoe Giver Blake Mycoskie will continue as visionary of the company and remain the 50% owner of TOMS. Financial terms of the private transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 2006, TOMS began as a shoe company that matched every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need – One for One. Since then, TOMS’ giving has grown to serve other basic needs. TOMS Eyewear gives sight to a person in need with every pair of eyewear purchased, and TOMS Roasting Co. gives one week of clean water to a person in need for every bag of coffee purchased. To date, TOMS has given over 25 million new pairs of shoes to children in need and helped restore sight to more than 250,000 people.

“This partnership will enable TOMS to grow faster and give to more people in more ways than we could otherwise,” said Mycoskie. “In eight short years, we’ve had incredible success, and now we need a strategic partner who shares our bold vision for the future and can help us realize it. We’re thrilled that Bain Capital is fully aligned with our commitment to One for One, and clearly they have the expertise to help us improve our business and further expand the scale of our mission.”

Mycoskie added, “While I believe TOMS has done a lot of good up to this point, there is so much more we can and should be doing. More importantly, I want TOMS to be relevant not only to the next generation, but the one after that, and far beyond.”

Mycoskie plans to give away at least half of his profits from the transaction by establishing a fund that identifies and supports social entrepreneurship and other causes to which he and his wife, Heather, are deeply committed.

In keeping with the One for One promise, Bain Capital has committed to give back to the community through a new charitable endeavor, funded by Mycoskie and a matching investment from Bain Capital, which will be established to support social entrepreneurs around the world.

Bain Capital has a long track record of investing in and partnering with management teams to help grow companies. Some of its consumer and retail investments have included Canada Goose, Bombardier Recreational Products, Bright Horizons, Jack Wolfskin, The Sealy Corporation, Michaels Stores, The Gymboree Corporation, Dunkin’ Brands Group, Burlington Stores and Dollarama.

“TOMS is synonymous with social responsibility and corporate impact and has demonstrated the power of being an authentic, mission-driven organization,” said Ryan Cotton, a Principal at Bain Capital. “We are extremely excited to partner with Blake Mycoskie to support the continued growth of the business and the expansion of the TOMS mission. As a firm and as individuals, we are strongly aligned with the principles of the One for One movement and its contribution to the global community.”

“Charitable involvement, social impact and global responsibility have always been important at Bain Capital,” said Josh Bekenstein, a Managing Director and a co-founder of Bain Capital. “We donate time, expertise and resources to a wide array of charitable and non-profit organizations around the world each year through partnership initiatives that make a real difference in our communities. This investment and our support of TOMS’ mission are entirely consistent with this approach.”

The Sage Group, LLC is serving as the exclusive financial advisor, and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is acting as legal advisor to TOMS. Financo, LLC. is serving as financial advisor, Ropes & Gray LLP is acting as legal counsel, and PwC LLP is serving as accounting advisor to Bain Capital. Committed financing for the transaction is being provided by Jefferies & Company, Inc.

About TOMS:
In 2006, American traveler Blake Mycoskie befriended children in a village in Argentina and found they had no shoes to protect their feet. Wanting to help, he created TOMS, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. One for One.® Since then, TOMS has given nearly 20 million pairs of new shoes to children in need.

Five years later, TOMS realized this movement could serve other basic needs and launched TOMS Eyewear. With every pair purchased, TOMS will help give sight to a person in need. One for One.® Since launching, TOMS has helped save or restore the sight of more than 200,000 people worldwide.

In 2014, TOMS launched TOMS Roasting Co. For each bag of coffee beans sold a person will get clean water for a week, and for every cup of coffee sold someone gets water for day.

About Bain Capital Private Equity
Bain Capital, LLC (www.baincapital.com) is one of the world’s foremost privately-held alternative investment firms, with more than $75 billion of assets under management in several pools of capital including private equity, venture capital, public equity, credit products and absolute return. Bain Capital’s more than 300 professionals are collectively the single largest investor in all of its funds and are dedicated to investing in and building its portfolio companies. Founded in 1984, Bain Capital has made private equity, growth, and venture capital investments in over 450 companies around the world, and has deep experience across five key vertical industries including consumer/retail, financial services and institutions, healthcare, industrials, and technology, media and telecommunications. Through the Bain Capital Community Partnership and Bain Capital Children’s Charity (www.baincapital.com/community), the firm and its employees serve as trusted partners with over 500 civic organizations around the world whose missions inspire them, helping to build great communities and improve the quality of life where they live and work. Bain Capital has offices in Boston, New York, Chicago, Palo Alto, London, Munich, Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Mumbai and Sydney.

Media Contacts:

TOMS
Doug Piwinski
SVP, Marketing and Communications
310.228.8801
doug@toms.com

or

Lex Suvanto
212 729 2463
lex.suvanto@edelman.com

For Bain Capital
Alex Stanton
Stanton PR & Marketing
212-780-0701
astanton@stantonprm.com