Women’s intimates’ brand KNIX sells majority stake to Essity

by | June 1, 2023

Toronto/Stockholm/Munich, July 8, 2022 – New chapter on Knix’ growth journey to redefine intimates: hygiene and health company Essity from Sweden acquires 80% of Knix Wear Inc., the leading inclusive brand for women’s intimates in North America. The purchase price amounts to USD 320m on a cash and debt free basis for 80% of the company. Acton Capital will sell all its shares to the new majority shareholder. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals and is expected to be finalized in the second half of 2022.

Knix, Inc. was founded in 2013 by CEO Joanna Griffiths with the mission to redefine intimates. Bootstrapped as a wholesale model, the company went online as a direct-to-consumer brand three years later. In 2019, Knix announced its first institutional VC funding led by European venture capital investor Acton Capital, followed by a double-digit million round only two years later. Today, the company has a strong presence in both the US and Canada and sells exclusively direct to consumer through online channels and supplemented by their six Knix retail stores.

Hannes Blum, partner of Acton Capital in Canada: “When we made our initial investment, we weren’t aware of a global pandemic waiting round the corner. But we were certain to team up with an exceptional founder and an excellent business. Under her lead, Joanna Griffiths has developed Knix into a stellar inclusive brand. Thanks to her drive, dedication, and commitment, she made Knix a true disrupter of the apparel establishment. We are very happy that she chose us to be part of Knix’ journey and we’re convinced, she will put her company on the global map.”

“Thank you to the entire Acton Capital team and especially Christoph Braun and Hannes Blum for their belief in Knix, support of my personal growth and development and being incredible partners at every step along the way. They taught me to trust my instincts and to believe in what’s possible. That is a gift that I will carry with me forever,”

Joanna Griffiths, CEO & Founder Knix

Knix and their teen brand, Kt by Knix, offer a broad assortment of intimate apparel with leading positions in the growing washable absorbent underwear category. In 2021, the company reported net sales of CAD 134m and a sales growth of 97%. The EBITDA amounted to CAD 13.8m. Knix has approximately 200 employees and is headquartered in Toronto, Canada.

Knix’ new major shareholder Essity is a leading global hygiene and health company whose sales are conducted in 150 countries (€ 12bn in 2021) under leading global brands like TENA, Tempo, Zewa, Leukoplast, and Tork. The company’s headquarter is located in Stockholm, Sweden, and Essity is listed on Nasdaq, Stockholm.

“I am delighted to welcome Knix to Essity. It’s a successful company with an impressive track record. Essity is now becoming the global market leader in leakproof apparel, which is an important step towards our goal of being the world’s fastest growing company in Intimate Hygiene, providing increased well-being for customers and consumers,”

Magnus Groth, President and CEO of Essity

“As a pioneer in the reusable leakproof underwear category, it is a dream come true to partner with Essity. We both share the same goals of improving our customers’ lives and having a positive impact in the communities in which we serve. I am thrilled to begin this next chapter together and continue to build upon Knix’s terrific growth and momentum,” says Joanna Griffiths, founder and CEO of Knix.

Über Acton Capital Partners

Acton Capital Partners ist ein internationaler Wachstumsinvestor mit Sitz in München. Seit 1999 investiert das Acton-Team erfolgreich in digitale Pioniere in Europa und Nordamerika.

Investmentfokus liegt dabei auf skalierbaren Geschäftsmodellen aus den Bereichen Future of Work, Digitale Marktplätze und Plattformen, Ecommerce, FinTech sowie Software-as-a-Service.

Alexa Tietze Editor

 

About Acton Capital
Acton Capital is a leading growth venture capital investor based in Munich. Since 1999, the Acton team has been investing in technology-based startups with proven business models from Europe and North America. With more than two decades of investment experience and an in-depth understanding of digital transformation across a wide range of industries, Acton Capital has already supported around 100 start-ups such as AlphaSights, Clio, Etsy, HomeToGo, Mambu, Momox, Mytheresa or Zooplus on their way to international market leadership.

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