NEW YORK (AP) — Federal antitrust regulators say a proposed merger that would combine old-school shaving company Schick with upstart Harry’s would end up costing consumers some skin.
The Federal Trade Commission on Monday sued to block Edgewell Personal Care Co.’s $1.37 billion acquisition of Harry’s, which was supposed to be finalized this year. The FTC argues that bringing two major shaving brands together would hurt competition.
Edgewell’s Schick is the No. 2 razor maker in the U.S., behind Gillette. Both brands were forced to slash prices and overhaul their marketing strategies in recent years response to the rise of Harry’s and rival Dollar Shave Club, which both started as direct-to-consumer digital brands.
New York-based Harry’s, which has expanded to sell its products at Target and Walmart, had hoped to capitalize on Edgewell’s large distribution channels and Schick’s blade technology. Edgewell, which has struggled to turn around Schick’s slumping sales, had hoped to leverage Harry’s direct-to-consumer marketing base and digital savvy.
Harry’s co-founders Jeff Raider and Andy Katz-Mayfield said Monday they were disappointed by the lawsuit and would evaluate their next steps.