Marketing review news
16 March 2006

Medimix gets a new look
The venerable Medimix soap has been launched in a new packaging after 36 years. The company has made the changes in order to increase the soap's appeal to the younger generation and also to make it amenable to variants and extensions.

In essence, the changes are peripheral and the company has not altered the ingredients or its fragrance. The new pack contains information about the ingredients and its clinically-proven benefits, information that the new consumer does not gather from the old pack.

The company said that research revealed that consumers wanted a change even in a traditional, ayurvedic soap. In addition the packaging had alienated the younger generation of consumers who did not want to be seen using the soap even though it was convinced of its efficacy.

Lux, Lifebuoy, Godrej No 1, Breeze and Nirma are the top five brands in the country that command 51-per cent market share. Medimix sells more in the South and the West.

Award for Kerala tourism commercial
Kerala Tourism's television commercial, 'Highway,' has won the `Das Golden Stadttor' (Golden City Gate) award at the recently held ITB Berlin tourism and travel fair. The commercial that was selected from over 300 films from across the world is one of a series of six ad films developed for Kerala Tourism by Stark Communications. Titled `Life in God's own country', comprises a six-film series shot by cinematographer, Santosh Sivan and presents Kerala the State in a new light, the release adds.

Hyundai's first million car rolled out
The one millionth Santro rolled out from Hyundai Motor India's assembly line at its plant near Chennai. The company said it achieved this milestone within 90 months of starting production.

Future plans of the company include coming out with a diesel version of the Santro or the Getz, launching a successor to the Accent with new design and new powertrain in September and a diesel variant of the luxury sedan Sonata by the end of the year.

Hidesign to sell apparel
The Pondicherry-based Hidesign brand is getting into the apparel segment under its existing Hidesign brand name. The company is eyeing export markets for the garments. In the recent past, Hidesign entered the Chinese market with its first shop at the Hong Kong airport.

The company has already forged joint ventures in Dubai, Malaysia, South Africa, Russia and more recently China. At the same time, in India, Hidesign is considering options of roping in a JV partner who could be invest in the company.

Without any imminent plans of entering the capital market, it hopes to enter into a partnership arrangement with an international company, which could bring in funds in the future.

Marking an investment of Rs17 crore for its international forays, which includes forging JVs in various companies with its existing distributors, Hidesign will funding it's plans through internal accruals. Hidesign's next outlet will be in Shanghai with the help of its distribution partner, Ray Chan. Other recent local JVs forged include one with the Jashanmal Group in Dubai.

Scorpio gets a new look
Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) has launched a new version of the Scorpio, replacing its earlier model in the domestic market without any change in the price tag. The new version of Scorpio incorporates over 40 changes and sports a common rail diesel engine (CRDe) across all finishes.

Scorpio prices currently span Rs 7.06 - 8.18 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).

The company is setting up a "customised vehicle cell" to cater to specific customer tastes.

Reliance Info makes changes in One India offer
Reliance Infocomm has extended its One Nation (Re 1 STD) plan, and has made changes in it to offer of 40 paise-a-minute for Reliance-to-Reliance STD calls on specific postpaid and prepaid schemes. This 40 paise offer (and the Re 1 per minute STD calls to all other phones) is available on the postpaid Reliance `India One 399' scheme and also on the prepaid Rs1,100 voucher, said a statement from the company.

On the postpaid India One 299 scheme as well as on all other prepaid schemes, Reliance to Reliance intra-circle calls will cost 40 paise a minute and STD calls to any phone Re 1 a minute. On certain other postpaid schemes, STD charges to non-Reliance phones have been cut to 75 paise a minute.

Honda launches Shine
Honda has launched a 125-cc bike, named Shine in two versions. While the drum brake version costs Rs45,120, the disc brake version costs about Rs2,000 more. Honda has opted to fit a dual-suspension system at the rear, deviating from the mono-suspension that it promoted with Unicorn.

Tata Motors offers free insurance for models
Tata Motors is offering a free insurance cover on the Indigo, Marina, Safari Dicor and Sumo Victa. The offer is valid till March 21.

Hyundai cuts prices
Hyundai has slashed prices on its models straddling the small car and premium sedan segments. The prices of the Santro have been cut by up to Rs26,165 and that of the Getz GLE and the Elantra GLS by Rs2,000 each. Hyundai has also cut the price of the Accent by Rs1,002 and that of the Sonata AT (L) by Rs 15,001.

New Camry
Toyota has launched its premium sedan, Camry in two new versions — the automatic transmission is priced at about Rs 21.6 lakh and the manual transmission, about Rs20 lakh. The new 2.4L — petrol powered Camry is more powerful than its earlier version.

Mother Dairy for increased retail visibility
Mother Dairy India, the marketing arm of the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), has chalked out a new growth strategy for the company this year.

It is planning to strengthen and expand its distribution network, especially for the Safal brand and introduce more varieties of processed food products. The company is targeting to add another 8,000 to 10,000 outlets for the Safal brand this year. In particular, Mother Dairy is looking for increased availability of its Safal fruit juices in local outlets as well as emerging retail formats such as foodmarts. The Rs180-crore fruit juices segment is witnessing a 25-per cent growth rate and Mother Dairy along with other players wants to cash in on the rising demand.

The company has also decided to increase its ad and marketing spend and apart from introducing two new flavours in the juices category, the company is working on rolling out more varieties of its milk-based products. The company is also evaluating options to introduce more varieties and flavours in cheese, ice-creams and yoghurt-based items.

Currently Mother Dairy ice-creams, dahi (curd), lassi, flavoured milk, butter, cheese and dairy whitener.

Shringar Cinema to start food courts
Shringar Cinemas will soon open food courts through a wholly owned subsidiary, Oxford Multiplex Cinemas. The food courts will operate under the brand name, Via 1 Food Street.

The company would formally launch food courts in two of Shringar's upcoming properties at Chandigarh and Surat. Initially, the company plans to introduce the food courts only in Fame multiplexes, but would also explore other opportunities later.

Tata Indicom introduces `Walky with FM'
Tata Indicom has launched its `Walky with FM' product here today, an Axesteel P830 instrument that doubles as a FM radio receiver and Walky telephone. The Axesteel P830 phone also features 12 polyphonic ringtones, dual speakerphone system, Internet capability, internal phonebook, and a dual language menu. Customers can buy the phone for Rs 1,999 or exchange existing Walky instruments and pay a non-refundable charge of Rs 1,000.

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