Skincare maker Galderma raises $1B through private placement, eyes long-delayed IPO

Swiss skincare company Galderma is keeping its eyes on a highly anticipated initial public offering after scooping up around $1 billion in private placement funding for newly issued shares.

That blockbuster figure came from a group of current shareholders, new investors and management, the company said in a release.

An IPO however “remains the likely next step” in Galderma’s goal to become the world’s leading dermatology company, it said in a press release. That's been in the works since private equity firm EQT bought the company, formally known as Nestle Skin Health, from the food and beverage powerhouse in 2019 for $10 billion—but has been met with a number of hitches preventing it from hitting the market.

Last May, the listing plans were derailed by volatile market conditions exacerbated by the invasion of Ukraine. Then, the company was looking to list after this year’s Easter holidays only to be held up again due to a “crisis of confidence” in the banking sector, a source close to the matter told Reuters in March.

That was also as Galderma’s shareholders were reviewing troubled lender Credit Suisse’s role as global coordinator for the IPO after the bank agreed to a takeover by its former rival UBS, the source added.

The IPO could be worth up to 20 billion Swiss francs ($22 billion), Bloomberg News reported last year from people familiar with the matter. It would be Europe’s largest of the year and Switzerland’s biggest since least 2000, Reuters reported from SIX Swiss Exchange data.

In March, after the second delay, people with knowledge of the matter told BNN Bloomberg that the IPO would be delayed until the second half of 2023 at the earliest. Now, the public offering is looking more like 2024, sources told GlobalCapital in May.

The drugmaker beefed up its portfolio in November 2021 by snapping up California-based skincare company Alastin and its anti-aging products for an undisclosed price, making its first U.S. buy and boosting its presence in the country.

“We are committed to advancing our differentiated innovation pipeline which includes two disruptive biologics with blockbuster potential for long-term sustainable growth,” CEO Flemming Ornskov, M.D., said in the recent release.

The company, which owns leading skincare brand Cetaphil, has a number of pipeline assets looking to target prurigo nodularis and atopic dermatitis, including two injectables being trialed in frown lines, crow’s feet and cheek wrinkles. Its 2022 revenue grew 13.9% to $3.8 billion in sales with earnings of $791 million.