When I found out that Clorox (yes, you heard me, Clorox) had acquired the humble Burt’s Bees company I was really disappointed. Now, it’s 2014 and I’m just hearing that Clorox purchased them back in 2007. I’ve been using their trusted product for years and never knew this until recently.
You can read about the purchase HERE.
The story of Burt is a charming one gone bad. Burt Shavitz, a beekeeper in Dexter, Maine, lived an extremely humble life selling honey in pickle jars from the back of his pickup truck and resided in the wilderness inside a turkey coop without running water or electricity.
In the summer of 1984, Shavitz was driving down the road and spotted a hitchhiker who needed a lift to the post office. He pulled over and picked up Roxanne Quimby, a 34-year-old woman who eventually became Shavitz’s lover and business partner. Quimby started helping him tend to the beehives, and that eventually led to the all natural-inspired health care products made with Shavitz’s honey and the birth of Burt’s Bees products.
Burt’s story and very powerful narrative gave Burt’s Bees products their legitimacy in my book. Creative entrepreneurs and knowledgeable consumers together working their magic; not the results of a corporate behemoth out to dominate the marketplace.
However, Quimby and Shavitz’s relationship became ‘sticky’ in the late ’90s for reasons unclear, yet probably having little to do with honey. Their romantic break up carried over to the split of their business partnership as well. In 1999, Quimby bought out Shavitz’s shares of the company for a small six-figure sum. Quimby then continued, becoming phenomenally successfully and growing sales to $43.5 million by 2002.
In 2003, a private equity firm, AEA investors, purchased 80 percent of Burt’s Bees from Quimby, with her retaining a 20 percent share and a seat on the board. In 2006, John Replogle, the former general manager of Unilever’s skin-care division became CEO and president of Burt’s Bees. The company was sold to Clorox in late October 2007 for $925 million.
Quimby was paid more than $300 million for her stake in Burt’s Bees. At the time of that deal, Shavitz reportedly demanded more money, and Quimby agreed to pay him $4 million. Quimby now refurbishes fancy, swank homes in Florida, travels the world and buys massive chunks of land in her free time. Our bearded man Shavitz, on the other hand, now 73 and unchanged, continues to reside amidst nature in his now-expanded turkey coop, which still remains absent of electricity or running water.
The Burt’s Bees story is disconcerting. I vaguely remembered long ago that one of my favorite ice cream products, Ben & Jerry’s, sold out. Unilever (which also owns Breyers), the giant conglomerate with an estimated market cap of $50 billion and close to 174,000 employees, bought Ben & Jerry’s in 2000 for $326 million.
SO, NO MORE BURT’S BEES FOR ME!
This is where I started researching on how to make my own lip balm. Well, I actually call it “Lip Butter”. I promise to everyone that I will never ever sell to a big company if by chance someone would approach me. LOL, seriously, NEVER!
My products that I make are created with everyone in mind. There are no hidden products and I will never say the word NATURAL. That word can mean a lot of things. They are honest and real products that I use and I only purchase my products from the best companies.
Here’s my post on my recipe for lip butter and where I buy all of my goodies. 🙂
Now, ONWARD we go……
Is it driving you crazy to know who won the three pack of lip butters?
Alright, I’ll tell you (HeHe)
I’m super excited to announce the WINNER, but before I do that, I would like to thank everyone for entering this giveaway! There will be more giveaways coming soon, I promise! I have a lot more DIY products that are in the works and I have a few essential oils I will giveaway from time to time. 🙂
The WINNER OF THE THREE-PACK OF “LIP BUTTER” IS:
Congratulations Kim!!!!! I will be emailing you so I can get these shipped right out to you!
Thank you again everyone! If anyone would like to purchase any of my lip butters, they are for sale for $2.50 each. They will make great stocking stuffers too!
PS. I’m going to be coming out with a guy version – Farmboy to be released before the holidays. I can’t wait!
Have a great day!!