Sue Harmsworth to leave ESPA
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Sue Harmsworth to leave ESPA

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Sue Harmsworth has announced her departure from ESPA International, the company she founded 25 years ago, saying the move will enable her to concentrate on her passions for spa, integrative medicine, health and wellbeing, and to develop new partnerships and projects.

Established by Harmsworth in 1993, ESPA products and treatments are sold in more than 700 spas around the world, and the brand also provides management and consulting for spas globally.

ESPA was acquired by The Hut Group – one of Europe’s largest retailers of premium beauty products – in September 2017 from affiliates of KSL Capital Partners in a reported £100m (€83.5m, £76.5m) deal.

Harmsworth said she will continue to stay connected to the world of wellbeing through her many global projects, including the Global Wellness Summit, Global Wellness Institute and the Wellness For Cancer initiative. She will also continue to chair and be involved in various projects and new ventures.

Talking to Spa Business, Harmsworth said her mission now is to raise the profile of the importance of prevention in lifestyle, by focusing on doing consultancy work on wellness destination projects: “I want to get prevention, wellness and integrative medicine integrated into the spa industry globally,” she said.

She’ll also work on healthy ageing projects, saying: “Unless you suffer from a major illness, ageing is a choice – we determine how we age by the way we live. I want to contribute to a new level of awareness of the opportunity for people to live well and age well.”

Commenting on her departure from the business, Harmsworth said: “I would personally like to thank our amazing customers, spas and global partners and of course our team for their loyal support. It really has been an incredible journey.

“I wish the ESPA brand and its wonderful team the very best for the future and I leave behind a fantastic new leadership team who are dedicated to developing the brand further. ESPA is in the expert hands of The Hut Group, where the team’s passion and expertise will propel ESPA forward into its next chapter.”

Paul Gedman, CEO of The Hut Group Beauty Brands, said: “More than two decades ago Sue Harmsworth had a revolutionary idea that created the idea of beauty and wellbeing, an idea to provide the best holistic products and spa services around the globe.

“The success of ESPA demonstrates a true commitment to entrepreneurship, a passion and drive; which means that today ESPA products are sold in over 70 countries. The company remains a pioneer in spa, wellness and beauty, with a highly promising future and poised for its next phase of evolution and growth under THG’s guidance. At The Hut Group we’re committed to delivering best-in-class products and spa experiences that ESPA is known and loved for, and crucially, developing the brand into a true global leader.”

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Sue Harmsworth has announced her departure from ESPA International, the company she founded 25 years ago, saying the move will enable her to concentrate on her passions for spa, integrative medicine, health and wellbeing, and to develop new partnerships and projects.
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