Marketing review

22 Mar 2007


Dabur changes positioning of Dabur Amla
FMCG major Dabur has changed the positioning of Dabur Amla. The company has given the brand a new tagline, new packaging and all in all a totally new image.

Dabur Amla has a consumer base of 3.5 crore across the country with sales growing at 18 per cent per annum.

The company expects more than 18 per cent growth for Dabur Amla once the new pack is introduced in the market from April 2007.

To increase the rural consumer base of Dabur Amla Hair Oil, Dabur is planning to launch a rural beauty pageant, to be held as a pilot project, in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.

The contest will be held in April-May in 20-30 villages of Uttar Pradesh, having a population of about 5,000.

The Rs250-crore Dabur Amla's biggest markets are in Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat. However, of the total hair oil market in the country, the brand's market share is just 13.6 per cent though in the heavy Amla-based hair oil market, the brand's share is 70.4 per cent.

Dabur ties up with kirana stores
Dabur India is going the Hindustan Unilever way by tying up kirana stores much on the lines of the latter's 'Super Value Store' programme.

At present the company is conducting pilot tests with local kirana stores in Ahmedabad, Chandigarh and Ranchi.

The company will also target rural areas where currently unbranded products have higher sales.

The pilot project will also be held in around 5,000 villages in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and other northern states.

Biscuit makers increase pack sizes
Biscuit manufacturers will again launch larger pack sizes. In February the biscuit companies had come out with smaller pack sizes to deal with rising input costs.

The larger pack sizes are on the back of the excise exemption announced in the Budget last month. The Budget provides for excise exemption on biscuits priced up to Rs50 per kg, which includes all brands of glucose biscuits and certain brands of Marie and milk biscuits.

Industry officials said the excise duty exemption would result in an Rs180 crore benefit to the industry and that the whole concession would be passed on to the end consumer. The companies plan to launch packs that have up to six per cent additional biscuits by the first week of April.

The organised biscuits market in India is pegged at Rs6,000 crore and is the largest packaged food segment in the country.

Mysore Sandal to launch soaps for different market segments
Mysore Sandal, the sandalwood soap brand from the state-owned Karnataka Soaps and Detergents (KS&DL), is launching 'Mysore Sandal Platinum', a super premium soap priced at a super premium Rs200 — four times pricier than any soap made by an Indian company.

The most expensive soap brands in India are priced at around Rs50. Apart from KS&DL's brand, Mysore Sandal Gold is available for Rs50 for a 75 gram bar. Hindustan Lever's Dove is available in the same range.

However, international organic soaps are available at more than Rs 100 in supermarkets.

KS&DL is also planning to expand its consumer base at the lower end of the market. For the first time, KS&DL is also planning to launch a new soap in the popular category in April.

Branded as 'Wave', the new non-sandal soap will be priced at Rs13 for 100-gram bar. KS&DL is currently conducting test marketing in Karnataka and aims to launch a new marketing campaign.

KS&DL, among the oldest manufacturers of sandalwood soap in India, has developed a new formulation under its existing product, Mysore Sandal Soap, exclusively for the US market. The new 125-gram soap is branded as 'Mysore Sandal Classic' and is enriched with moisturisers and conditioners to meet the needs of consumers in countries facing severe winter.

KS&DL has also redesigned the packaging of some of its soaps and talcum powder and has relaunched them.

KS&DL is also entering the agarbathi (incense stick) market with a new brand — Nagachampa - later this month. The company has tied up with a non-government organisation in Dharmasthala to manufacture these agarbathis and sell them in a pack of 20 sticks priced at Rs 5.

One million units of Minute Maid sold in one month
Coca-Cola India has sold one million units of its new fruit drink Minute Maid Pulpy Orange in its first month of launch in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The company has now rolled out the product in over 35 cities across South India.

The company is making the product available through various distribution channels, including the conventional retail outlets and large format modern trade stores.

ICICI introduces EMI card
India's largest private bank ICICI Bank has launched the EMI card. According to the bank EMI card is a unique installment concept, wherein you have the option of paying a fixed amount every month subject to the purchase limit you enjoy.

Other commercial banks like UTI Bank, HDFC Bank, Citibank and Standard Chartered Bank give their credit-worthy customers the option of converting their credit card outstanding amounts into EMI payments (personal loan).

ICICI Bank officials said that even if customers make multiple purchases on the card it would not increase the EMI amount but only the tenure would be proportionately increased. Hence the EMI card is a form of credit card, though the customer pays a fixed amount called EMI amount due.

There is no grace period and interest gets levied as the cash withdrawal. In case of personal loan, the tenor and transaction amount is fixed and the EMI can vary as per the loan taken. But in the case of the EMI card this is not so.

The bank is currently offering this card to existing ICICI Bank customers. Open market sourcing has begun, but it is based on standard credit card process and credit criterion.

All transactions on the EMI credit card are automatically converted into EMI payments. The EMI amount due (EAD) would be Rs1,000, Rs2,000 and Rs4,000 per month based on the purchase limit pre-approved by the bank.

Purchase limit on the EMI card ranges from Rs24,000 to Rs36,000, Rs48,000 to Rs72,000 and Rs6,000 to Rs144,000 based on the credit eligibility. Based on the purchase limit, the rate of interest will vary from zero per cent, 1.49 per cent and 1.99 per cent.

As to interest rates, there is no difference between the EMI card and EMI on call. However, as far as the mode of repayment is concerned, the EMI amount remains fixed and the tenure is flexible for the EMI card, whereas the tenure is fixed and the EMI amount is flexible for EMI on call.

Disney finds its 'Little Indian Princess'
The Walt Disney Company (India) announced Kashish Gorawara, a six year old from Mumbai as the winner of the countrywide search titled- 'Disney Princess 06-07'. Bollywood star, Dia Mirza crowned little Kashish at Famous Studio's in Mumbai today. Kashish won the title beating over 1000 short listed participants in an extensive search that panned across Mumbai, New Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad.

Little girls across India participated in this festive event, which began in December 2006 by purchasing Disney Princess merchandise and getting enrolling for an audition. Participants were further short listed on the basis of their creativity, self expression and confidence. The final winner was chosen through an audience poll across India.

Every year girls have access to 2 billion hours of immersion into the Disney Princess experience. The brand continues to be the fastest growing, nearly universally recognized brand Disney has ever created.

Hutch launches data back-up service
Lost your mobile and are worried about the lost date? Well your worries are now over as mobile operator Hutch has is offering its customers a `phone backup service'. Besides phonebook data it will also preserve SMS, MMS, ring tones, games, photos, videos, etc and will help switch phones seamlessly by loading the data on a new handset.

In a release, Hutch said customers can access this facility in two ways — through GPRS enabled phones as well as through SMS on non-GPRS phones. On sending an SMS message `SMS BACKUP' to "52585" customers will receive a service message to activate the service.

The application automatically backs up data from the customer's phone to a server and this can be accessed using a username and password generated by the application.

The backup service also works on non-GPRS phones through SMS. The service costs Rs50 per month for GPRS users, and Rs30 per month for non-GPRS users The application is currently supported by 84 types of GPRS enabled handsets and their details are available on

The backup service also works on non-GPRS phones through SMS. The cost is Rs50 per month for GPRS users, and Rs30 per month for non-GPRS users. Non-GPRS users, however, can savephonebook data alone.

Mahindra cuts vendor list
SUV and tractor specialist Mahindra & Mahindra has started cutting its vendor base as it attempts to drive down costs and increase efficiency.

The company has cut down its total vendors from 220 to 150 and plans to reduce the number further. The company has also started negotiating for better prices from vendors on the basis of higher volume of work to them. The reduction in vendor base has helped the company to achieve better efficiencies apart from being able to monitor the production closely.

Cost savings because of better vendor management has allowed the vehicle manufacturer to not only pass on the benefit to the customers but also allowed it to use extra resources to make the vehicles more efficient.

Citizen to hardsell the Eco-Drive range
Japanese watch manufacturer Citizen Watches is hard selling its watch range Eco-Drive in India. The company expects to ramp up sales over the next three years. Eco-friendly watches currently accounted for 20 per cent of its sales by volume and 47 per cent of its sales in terms of value.

The company is targeting 80 per cent volume and 90 per cent value from the Eco-Drive range by 2010.

The company says that nearly 30 million watch batteries are discarded every year and end up adding chemicals to the environment. The Eco-Drive range runs on any light source obviating the need for a battery, and has a calendar programmed for 100 years. Its collections include the Promaster series, Moon Collection, Stiletto for men and Kareena's collection, Forever Diamonds Collection for women.

The Eco-Drive range is endorsed by cricketer Rahul Dravid and film actor Kareena Kapoor. While Citizen Watches priced between Rs4,000 and 40,000, address the premium and super premium watch segments in the country, Japan CBM has recently launched its Q&Q range in southern India which are priced between Rs500 and Rs2,500 and will address the lower end of the watch segment.

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