Unilever, iVillage Form Net Firm
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The new business will consist of customized online services, beauty and personal care products, as well as personalized product recommendations. It will function as a separate, independently-managed venture from Unilever (UL) and iVillage (IVIL), and will provide the arena for women to go to one unbiased site for beauty needs.
Unilever will provide capital as well as sponsorship and promotional initiatives while iVillage will offer its beauty channel, technology and promotional consideration. The company will generate revenues through advertising, sponsorships and commerce sales of beauty and personal care products. It will be headquartered in New York.
David L. Stern, formerly vice president of Unilever's Interactive Brand Center (IBC), has been named chief executive officer for the new company. Additional talent will be actively recruited over the coming months to further staff this venture.
Famous for its variety of soaps, Unilever is one of the world's largest consumer products companies with sales close to $50 billion. It produces and markets a wide range of foods, home and personal care products. Unilever operates in 88 countries around the globe and employs 267,000 people.
Since going public last year, iVillage has become the leading women's online community by providing practical solutions and everyday support for women between the ages of 25 and 54. Last month, the company began offering free home health management tools to its clients via its site, allhealth.com.