Episkin, Subsidiary Of L’Oréal, Acquires Skinethic, Leader In Tissue Engineering Group

Alternative Approaches to Safety Evaluation:“a top Priority for L’Oréal”
Episkin, subsidiary of L’Oréal, acquires SkinEthic, leader in Tissue Engineering

- Acquisition of SkinEthic Places L’Oréal in the front line of Technologies Dedicated to Research and Safety Evaluation -

Clichy 28th February, 2006 - L’Oréal has today underlined its commitment to the further development of alternative methods for safety evaluation with the announcement that Episkin, a subsidiary of the group that is dedicated to the development of reconstructed skin, has acquired SkinEthic. SkinEthic, based in Nice, France, is expert in the field of tissue engineering, and its know-how will complement and widen the expertise that already exists within L’Oréal.

SkinEthic is an important worldwide player in the production and commercialisation of human epidermal and epithelial tissues (including epidermis, dermis, corneal, oral, gingival, oesophageal epithelium, alveolar and vaginal mucosa) for in vitro test applications across many industries.

L’Oréal’s ultimate goal is to develop a range of approaches and standardised in vitro methods that can be used to test ingredient safety and shared across a number of industry sectors; with the aim of accelerating the elimination of animal testing. The complimentary nature of Episkin and SkinEthic allows L’Oréal to further advance its commitment to the development of alternative methods for the safety assessment of product ingredients.

Commenting on the acquisition, Jean-François Grollier, Vice-President of Research and Development at L’Oréal said “Providing cutting-edge teams, such as these, with the opportunity to work at the crossroads of science and industry, demonstrates our support for sustainable innovation.”

“The acquisition of SkinEthic allows us to respond to the needs of the entire industry and more specifically in the area of alternative approaches to animal testing – a top priority for L’Oréal”, he continued.

“The acquisition provides SkinEthic with a new approach to the market and brings with it the research capability that will benefit all present and future customers”, added Doctor Martin Rosdy, founder of SkinEthic.

L’Oréal supports the objective of the elimination of laboratory animal testing and is working on various alternative methods that must be validated by competent scientific authorities.

L’Oréal has been committed to the development of alternative approaches for more than twenty years and has already contributed to successful scientific validations together with ECVAM (European Centre for Validation of Alternative Methods). The company has not carried out or commissioned tests of products on animals since 1989.

"This news release does not constitute an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy, L’Oréal shares. If you wish to obtain more comprehensive information about L’Oréal, please refer to the public documents registered in France with the Autorité des Marchés Financiers [which are also available in English on our Internet site: www.loreal-finance.com]. This news release may contain some forward-looking statements. Although the Company considers that these statements are based on reasonable hypotheses at the date of publication of this release, they are by their nature subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated or projected in these statements."

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