Hero Cosmetics acquired by Church & Dwight for $630 million

Today, manufacturing giant Church & Dwight announced its acquisition of Hero Cosmetics for $630 million. The sale comes after several years of continued growth for the acne-focused skincare brand, but for founder Ju Rhyu, it all started with a single moment.

Rhyu was living in Seoul when she first discovered the anti-acne powers of hydrocolloid patches. After a years-long battle with breakouts, she was desperate for something that would help her acne without leaving her skin dry or irritated, and after trying hydrocolloid she knew she had found just that. “It was easy to use and better than the traditional white cream or pink cream we all used for breakouts,” Rhyu recalls. “I knew more people needed to know about this product.”

With a mission to give people a real solution when needed, she founded Hero Cosmetics in 2017 with a single product, the Mighty Patch. Hydrocolloid Round Dots helped educate the world about hydrocolloid’s abilities as an acne solution and made the adhesive accessible to everyone. The Mighty Patch was quickly adopted by consumers, becoming an overnight bestseller for retailers like Target and Ulta Beauty, but it also inspired an industry-wide obsession with button patches.

Since its launch five years ago, Hero Cosmetics has grown significantly, adding a number of other acne patches and skincare products to its range. The brand sells a box of the Mighty Patch every three seconds, and it’s been the number one product in the skincare and acne categories on Amazon for several quarters. “I loved seeing how our brand and our products have a positive impact on people’s lives and that impact only increases over time,” says Rhyu. “We get many reviews and comments about how Hero products have changed lives.”

Over the past two years, the brand’s success has sparked internal discussions of an acquisition, a path its founder knew would help secure Hero’s legacy, so his team is thrilled to have found a new home with Church & Dwight, the giant manufacturer behind Arm & Hammer, OxiClean and Nair. “We plan to accelerate some of our growth plans, such as continued expansion in the United States and expanding our international footprint, while leveraging some of Church & Dwight,” says Rhyu, who will remain Hero’s co-founder and CEO. “This acquisition with Church & Dwight marks an important milestone in our company’s history and I am excited to unlock further growth with them.”

But beyond the promising future the acquisition holds for Hero, Rhyu hopes it will serve as an inspiration to other Founders. “It’s a huge personal victory, for the team and for the consumer ecosystem,” she says. “But it’s also a win for entrepreneurs because it shows you can take a small idea and turn it into a successful business that’s both high-growth and highly profitable.”

Donovan B. Sanford