In a bid to become an international leader in plant sterol esters and natural vitamin E, US company Kensing acquires Spanish company Vitae Naturals and its product range, comprising proprietary formulations.
European personal care expansion
Kensing, a portfolio company of the investment business, One Rock Capital Partners, announced on 28 June 2022 that it has completed its latest purchase. By acquiring the leading European plant sterols, natural vitamin E and high-purity surfactants company, Kensing hopes to expand its presence in the skincare end-markets.
“We are pleased to bring Vitae Naturals into the Kensing family,” says Serge Rogasik, Chief Executive Officer of Kensing. “This acquisition is highly complementary, strengthens our footprint in Europe and enables further expansion in food ingredients,” added Rogasik.
Based in Talavera de la Reina, Spain, Vitae Naturals has produced plant sterol esters and non-genetically modified organism (GMO) natural vitamin E derivatives for the skincare industry since its launch in 2000.
“Our businesses share similar values and we are delighted to become a part of the Kensing team,” adds Rafael Cano Mariblanca, General Manager of Vitae Naturals. “Kensing provides a strong platform to build upon our position in our existing markets and expand further into the personal care market.”
Pursuing plant sterol ester and vitamin E production
Since its inception more than 22 years ago, Vitae Naturals has carved out a prominent position in the cosmetics and personal care industries' plant-based formulations space via its brands Vitasterol and Vitapherole. The Spanish company produces plant sterol esters under its Vitasterol brand and natural vitamin E derivatives via its Vitapherole name.
Plant sterol esters are known as a plant-based alternative to cholesterol as they share similar profiles. Yet, plant sterol esters are often selected for their beneficial health properties as they have been clinically proven to naturally lower cholesterol, Kensing shared, and help fight against heart disease. Typically, the ingredient is added to food such as margarine and spreads and is also popular in supplements.
Plant sterol esters, otherwise known as phytosterols, are free alcohols and fatty acid esters that occur naturally. A sought-after component in personal care products too, plant sterol esters appeal to the natural, green and clean trends and natural ingredients market. They are notably used by cosmetics and personal care brands in response to the wider industry’s interest in plant-based formulations.
Natural vitamin E derivatives have been a prominent formulation component in vitamin supplements and natural antioxidants in cosmetics and applications. To date, Vitae Naturals has seen its plant sterol esters, natural vitamin E and surfactants used by global customers in more than 40 countries across five continents.
Natural vitamin E is most commonly found in various plant-based products, including oils, nuts, seeds, and fruits and vegetables. Vitamin E is known for its fat-solubility and antioxidant properties in skin care formulations. By lowering and combatting the production of free radicals, vitamin E can help to protect against healthy skin cell damage and prevent oxidative stress.
Evolving plant-based formulations
Vitae Natural has developed its product portfolio based on a range of proprietary formulations, including plant sterol esters, microencapsulated vitamin E and antioxidant systems. Based in Illinois, US, and established in 1948, Kensing has developed a reputation for manufacturing various speciality chemicals derived from vegetable oils. Designed for the personal care market, the company strives to use high-quality and precision formulation to produce plant sterols, natural vitamin E, anionic surfactants and esters.
“Together, we have a truly diversified footprint with numerous opportunities for growth,” continues Mariblanca.
“This is an exciting time for both companies and we look forward to partnering with the Vitae team to accelerate our growth objectives,” Rogasik concludes.