Brandon Truaxe, the founder of Canadian beauty company Deciem, has died at the age of 40.
Truaxe was the controversial leader behind Deciem, which housed the hugely popular budget cosmetics line The Ordinary.
According to reports, the news broke via a company-wide email to Deciem employees from acting CEO Nicola Kilner. The email read: "All offices, warehouses, factories and stores please close today and take the time to cry with sadness, smile at the good times we had, reflect on what his genius built and hug your loved ones that little harder."
Related: Deciem drama: Is the brand shutting down?
Meanwhile, a social media post by Deciem read, "Brandon, our founder and friend. You touched our hearts, inspired our minds and made us believe that anything is possible.
"Thank you for every laugh, every learning and every moment of your genius. Whilst we can’t imagine a world without you, we promise to take care of each other and will work hard to continue your vision.
"May you finally be at peace. Love, (forever), your DECIEM."
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The past year has been turbulent for both the company and for Truaxe, with the founder regularly posting erratic messages on social media. In October, Truaxe posted a video to Instagram stating Deciem would be "shutting down all operations until further notice... which is about two months".
He also added, "almost everyone at Deciem has been involved in a major criminal activity which includes financial crimes and much others".
This past weekend, Truaxe posted a series of videos to his personal Instagram account, revealing his home address and showing that he had been drinking alcohol.
The cause of Truaxe's death is not yet known.