ITC to acquire J&J's Savlon, Shower to Shower brands in India

Indian FMCG major ITC Ltd has signed an agreement with US-based consumer healthcare company Johnson & Johnson to buy trademarks for its wound care product Savlon and talcum powder Shower To Shower in India.

ITC, which has set itself a target of Rs1,00,000-cr revenue from its non-cigarettes business over the next 15 years, is planning to increase its focus on non-cigarette business to add volumes.

For ITC, which is into hotels, cigarettes, paper packaging, rural retail and production of various other consumer products, it will be the first acquisition in the personal care segment.

'Savlon', which is a part of Johnson & Johnson's oral and wound care portfolio, comes in liquid, soap and hand wash forms and is a poor rival to market leader Dettol in the antiseptics segment.

'Shower to Shower' is a talcum powder brand, which, incidentally had been sold to Valeant Pharmaceuticals worldwide sometime back. It is, however, not clear if the deal excluded the Indian market.

Shower to Shower talcum powder has been under scrutiny over alleged cancer risks.

The acquisition of these two brands and related properties will help ITC enter new areas in consumer goods production. ITC did not reveal the value of the acquisitions.

ITC had reported a net revenue of Rs32,883 crore in 2013-14, of which Rs8,100 crore came from the non-cigarette business.

The Kolkata-based company has been ramping up its non-cigarette product portfolio over the past several years. ITC currently has around 20 brands, including some high-value ones like Engage, Aashirvaad, Sunfeast, Vivel, Bingo!, Classmate and Yippee!

The company is gearing up enter the new segments of dairy products and juices. It recently launched juices in South India under a B-Natural brand.

ITC, which has envisaged investment of Rs25,000 crore in expansion, is in the process of creating the necessary infrastructure, including distribution network.