Shea Moisture Founder, Richelieu Dennis, Acquires Essence From Time Inc.

CEO of SheaMoisture Richelieu Dennis on Feb. 15, 2015, in New York City. (Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for SheaMoisture)

Essence Communications Inc., the 47-year-old mutliplatform brand that owns Essence magazine and the annual Essence Festival, has gone back to black (ownership), having been acquired by Essence Ventures LLC, an independent African-American-owned company, Essence Ventures announced in a press release. As reported earlier by Journal-isms for The Root, the Essence brand was not part of the historic, nearly $3 billion sale of Time Inc. to the Meredith Corp. in November 2017.

The brand was looking for another buyer, and has apparently found one with Essence Ventures, which was founded and is chaired by Richelieu Dennis, who also is founder of Shea Moisture (In November, Unilever acquired the parent company for Shea Moisture, Sundial Brands).

“ . . . [W]e are excited to be able to return this culturally relevant and historically significant platform to ownership by the people and the consumers whom it serves, and offer new opportunities for the women leading the business to also be partners in the business,” said Dennis of the Essence brand acquisition.

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