Cult Beauty describes itself as an “insider’s guide to the world’s best beauty buys”, which uses a panel of 48 top hair and beauty experts to cherry-pick products.The London-based business was launched by Jessica DeLuca Moore (a former investment banker) and Alexia Inge (an ex-journalist and PR agent) in June 2008 with £70,000 of savings. Revenues have grown 300 per cent year on year. “We came across a lot of resistance from beauty brands who saw the internet as the ‘Wild West’ of retail. But I wanted to create a resource to help women discern the truth about what really works from the pseudo-scientific advertising claims and airbrushed images we’re all bombarded with daily,” explains DeLuca Moore. “We want to be the most trusted beauty retailer in the world – the Net-A-Porter of beauty.” It’s a fitting comment given the background of the company’s first two investors: Mark Quinn-Newal and Murray Salmon, both founding partners of Net-A-Porter. The deal was announced this week (the sum is undisclosed). Salmon, who was Net-A-Porter’s FD, led the investment round and will join Cult Beauty’s board of directors. Cult Beauty employs 12 people. The company tells us that it is meeting with a US investor in September and is already fielding calls from potential buyers. One to watch.
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