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P.O. Box 144345, Austin, TX 78714-4345
Phone: 512-926-4900 x121; Fax: 512-926-2345
Contact: Public Relations
Procter & Gamble Buys New Chapter, Inc.
(Austin, TX. March 19, 2012) New Chapter, Inc., a vitamin and supplement company based in Brattleboro, Vermont, announced on Friday its purchase by Procter & Gamble, the world’s largest consumer goods company, for an undisclosed price. New Chapter founders Paul and Barbi Schulick assured employees that the corporation plans to operate New Chapter as a wholly owned subsidiary with headquarters remaining in Brattleboro.
“Our shared mantra is acquisition, not assimilation,” wrote the Schulicks in a letter to New Chapter employees that provided details about the arrangement (e-mail to Mark Blumenthal, March 16, 2012). “Our culture, guiding principles, and credo will not change and will only be buoyed by the superlative values gleaned from Procter & Gamble’s resources and experience.”
New Chapter’s embarked on its mission to harness the healing power of herbs in 1982. At the time, its liquid herbal extracts (originally sold under the name New Moon) were being pressed in a makeshift garage factory. Thirty years later, its purchase by Procter & Gamble marks an obvious milestone for the company.
"There's probably no better evidence of mainstream consumer acceptance of the benefits of herbal dietary supplements than P&G's acquisition of New Chapter," said ABC Founder and Executive Director Mark Blumenthal. "Obviously, Procter & Gamble has done a significant amount of due diligence in researching not only New Chapter's history and product quality but also in determining the future growth potential for New Chapter's herbal and other dietary supplement products. A company like P&G doesn't make such a strategic move into a new area like dietary supplements without a considerable level of research."
Paul and Barbi Schulick emphasized how the acquisition will present new opportunities for New Chapter. In their letter, the Schulicks wrote that Procter & Gamble has “the ability to turbocharge our mission while sustainably delivering the wisdom of nature to people and planet in ways we never even imagined.” Additionally, the founders believe that harnessing the expertise of the 175-year-old company will allow New Chapter to better navigate the complex regulatory process, strengthen “quality, supply chain, and science platforms,” and enrich philanthropic and sustainability efforts.
New Chapter, Inc. was awarded ABC’s Varro E. Tyler Commercial Investment in Phytomedicinal Research Award in 2011.1 It was the first American company to be honored with the award. New Chapter has sponsored research arrangements with institutions such as Columbia University, Cornell University, and the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in order to scientifically assess the beneficial qualities of some of its products, particularly Zyflamend®, a formula designed for prostate health, made with supercritical carbon dioxide extracts of various herbs.
Paul and Barbi Schulick admit that, on the surface, merging with one of the world’s largest companies seems like an odd move for a “progressive, innovative, entrepreneurial company like New Chapter,” which employs roughly 175 people in its Brattleboro facilities. However, they say it is rare to find a corporation that carries “the unparalleled commitment to quality, trust, and excellence that is foundational to Procter & Gamble.” They have assured staff members that no significant changes in jobs, compensation, benefits, or business processes will take place.
Procter & Gamble, a Fortune 500 company based in Cincinnati, OH, markets a wide variety of products around the world from shampoo and razors to diapers and detergents. In 2011, Procter & Gamble reported more than $80 billion in sales. The purchase of New Chapter is the company’s first venture into the organic vitamin and supplement markets, according to an article from The Brattleboro Reformer.2
However, Blumenthal added that "Procter & Gamble is no stranger to the herbal ingredients arena. They research and develop many botanical ingredients for a variety of consumer products that they sell in many parts of the world."
The Schulicks say they are energized and inspired by Procter & Gamble’s commitment to honoring the integrity of the company, while continuing to further their mission. “Procter & Gamble’s investment in New Chapter is testament to the fact that the largest consumer goods company in the world now recognizes the power of nature’s healing and believes in its promise to transform global health and wellness.”
Both New Chapter and Procter & Gamble are long-time Sponsor Members of ABC.