L'Oreal grows natural cosmetics focus with vegan firm Logocos

FILE PHOTO: A cosmetic display of French cosmetics group L'Oreal is seen during the inauguration of the commercial zone at the Nice international airport Terminal 1 in Nice, France, June 10, 2016. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - Cosmetics group L'Oreal OREP.PA said on Wednesday it had bought Germany's Logocos Naturkosmetik, a manufacturer of vegan beauty products increasingly in vogue with the French group's customers.

L’Oreal, which did not disclose financial terms, said it aimed to expand sales of the German company’s brands internationally, and especially in western Europe.

The world’s biggest cosmetics manufacturer, L’Oreal has branched increasingly into plant-based products in recent years, at a time when shoppers are becoming more wary of chemical ingredients and are seeking out natural alternatives.

It launched a vegan range sourced from plants found in India, Botanea, for its professional products division that caters to salons earlier this year, and already owns other organic and bio-friendly labels like Sanoflore.

At one point L'Oreal also owned Britain's The Body Shop, one of the pioneers of ethical and natural cosmetics, but the business struggled as competition in the segment rose and it was sold off last year to Brazil's Natura Cosmeticos NATU3.SA.

The Logocos Naturkosmetik brands, which include Sante and Logona hair and skincare products, will come under L’Oreal’s mass market unit - its largest division, which has delivered more sluggish growth than others like its luxury arm in recent quarters.

Separately, L’Oreal said also said on Wednesday it had made a bid to buy the Societe des Thermes de la Roche-Posay thermal station in western France, a 1921 site dedicated to treating dermatogolical ills.

It already owns the label of the same name, La Roche-Posay, which specializes in sensitive skin.

Reporting by Sarah White; Editing by Adrian Croft