A Chinese business conglomerate has agreed to become the majority shareholder of the Israeli Ahava Dead Sea minerals cosmetics company for close to $76.5 million.
The final number of shares China’s Fosun International will buy has yet to be determined, but the company, mainland China’s largest private-owned conglomerate, signed an agreement to become the majority owner, Globes reported.
Fosun has been busy acquiring several overseas companies in the past year, and Globes reported that Ahava could be close to breaking into the Chinese cosmetics markets.
Ahava, which makes skincare products from Dead Sea minerals, has since June been considering moving its facilities from the West Bank, potentially in response to pressure from the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, which seeks to damage Israel’s economy for its policies against Palestinians.
The company, which has 25 percent fewer employees than it had in 2013, denies it is yielding to BDS pressure.
In a June statement regarding the possibility of opening a manufacturing plant inside Israel’s pre-1967 borders, Ahava framed the potential move as due to changing needs, not politics.
“In light of expanding production needs and changes in regulations for cosmetic products in some Western nations, Ahava is indeed examining the possibility of opening an additional factory…. As of now there is no final decision,” the company said.
In 2011, the company closed its London flagship store, citing biweekly anti-Israel demonstrations and boycotts.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.