Close Search
 
MEDIA, JOBS & RESOURCES for the COMMON GOOD

B Corp Flora and Fauna is acquired for more than $26 million


1 June 2021 at 4:39 pm
Nikki Stefanoff
We caught up with the ethical online store’s founder and CEO, Julie Mathers, to find out how she approached a purpose-led acquisition and what it means for the brand 


Nikki Stefanoff | 1 June 2021 at 4:39 pm


0 Comments


 Print
B Corp Flora and Fauna is acquired for more than $26 million
1 June 2021 at 4:39 pm

We caught up with the ethical online store’s founder and CEO, Julie Mathers, to find out how she approached a purpose-led acquisition and what it means for the brand 

Just seven years after Julie Mathers founded the ethical online store Flora and Fauna, the family-run company has been acquired by BWX for more than $26 million. 

Mathers started Flora and Fauna (F&F) as a one-woman show in 2014, with her husband Tom coming on board swiftly after. Until last year the couple had focused solely on growing the business, barely taking a wage and before the recent acquisition had never had any outside investment in the business. 

After getting through the pandemic Mathers realised that F&F needed external investment to grow in the way she wanted, and so began working with Deloitte to find investment opportunities. 

The one non-negotiable being that whoever Deloitte approached needed to align with the company’s values and vision. 

“The process wasn’t a quick one because we had to really establish [before we met with anyone] that they were the right fit,” Mathers told Pro Bono News.

“Finding someone that aligned with our values was very important to me right from the outset. We needed to be able to work with someone who really understood our business and the reasons behind it. For us, it’s all about balancing purpose and profit. One is never at the expense of the other.” 

Mathers knew BWX could bring an understanding of e-commerce thanks to its already established online business Nourished Life, but it was only after connecting with its CEO that she felt comfortable it was the right fit.

“BWX’s CEO is great, he has a massive amount of retail experience, comes with a different view on things and doesn’t want to change anything we do,” she said. 

With BWX set to acquire 100 per cent of F&F for between $27.9 million to $30.8 million, depending on revenue for the rest of this financial year, and continuing to employ Mathers and her team of 47 staff, Mathers sees the future as being very much business as usual. 

“The acquisition means we get access to a much bigger support system and people with great skills. Plus, BWX is also a manufacturing company so there’s potential there and, of course, there’s the [financial] investment so we can grow.”

The other aspect of F&F that Mathers refused to compromise on is the company’s B Corp status – something she’s proud of and sees as being a hugely important part of the business. 

“Being a B Corp is very, very important to me. It’s an integral part of who we are. In fact, we’ve just recertified,” she said. 

“BWX coming on board doesn’t change anything from this perspective and we fully intend to retain our B Corp status. Really, it’s business as usual. We have a strategy for F&F and we’ll stay focused on delivering that.” 

Mathers hopes that through this acquisition she has shown that there’s huge value in purpose-driven businesses. 

“Throughout this journey, I found that investors got a bit scared by the purpose side of things because they didn’t understand how purpose can mix with finance,” she said. 

“I hope that this acquisition inspires people to see things differently. I also hope it inspires existing businesses to think more about their credentials when it comes to being purpose-led.”

 


Nikki Stefanoff  |  Journalist  |  @ProBonoNews

Nikki Stefanoff is a journalist at Pro Bono News covering the social sector.

PB Careers
Get your biweekly dose of news, opinion and analysis to keep you up to date with what’s happening and why it matters for you, sent every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

Got a story to share?

Got a news tip or article idea for Pro Bono News? Or perhaps you would like to write an article and join a growing community of sector leaders sharing their thoughts and analysis with Pro Bono News readers? Get in touch at news@probonoaustralia.com.au or download our contributor guidelines.

Advertisement


Get more stories like this

FREE SOCIAL
SECTOR NEWS

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

A B Corp collaboration to make your mouth water

Nikki Stefanoff

Wednesday, 26th May 2021 at 4:25 pm

Ethical banking and your organisation

Contributor

Wednesday, 5th May 2021 at 7:00 am

What does your gift mean this Christmas?

Maggie Coggan

Wednesday, 16th December 2020 at 5:36 pm

pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook
×