Cosmetics company Charlotte Tilbury has returned furlough payments it took during the pandemic, to the government after its makeup sales withstood the pandemic and lockdown restrictions, according to reports.
Founded by celebrity makeup artist of the same name in 2013, last year sales at Charlotte Tilbury Beauty grew 11.3 per cent to £258.8m and the business was sold to family-owned Spanish cosmetics group Puig for £1.3bn, according to the Times, which first reported the news.
Despite most makeup counters being closed with consumers stuck at home during lockdowns, Charlotte Tilbury saw online sales surge 115 per cent to £109m, propelled by social media and virtual consultations. London-born founder Charlotte Tilbury’s personal social media is followed by 4.4m users alone.
Reportedly favoured by the likes of Meghan Markle and Amal Clooney, Charlotte Tilbury cosmetics have rocketed in popularity since being launched in 2013 at London’s Selfridges. Since setting up a flagship store in Covent Garden in London the brand has expanded into over 60 international locations including in the US, Canada and Hong Kong.
As a result of the company’s resilience during the pandemic, Charlotte Tilbury said the cult makeup business had paid back furlough payments accepted over the period, and thanked the UK government for its support.
The group repaid furlough cash as underlying profits, before one-off costs, interest payments and other adjustments, rose nearly 44 per cent to £32m, a company spokesperson told the Guardian.
The news follows reports that celebrity designer Stella McCartney enjoyed a pay rise to £2.7m last year, while her business claimed £850,000 in government support during the pandemic.