Unilever re-enters India’s hair oil segment

By Lucy Whitehouse contact

- Last updated on GMT

Unilever re-enters India’s hair oil segment
Hindustan Unilever (HUL) has completed its acquisition of an ayurvedic hair and personal care brand in India.

In taking it on the brand, Indulekha, Unilever will be re-entering the hair oil segment for the first time since 2006, when it sold its Nihar range.

The move, which marks its first acquisition for more than a decade, suggests the company is now keen to diversify its product offering following a recent slow-down in sales, particularly in rural regions.

Unilever has reportedly completed the deal at a price of Rs 330 crore - which the Business Standard​ describes as “a record for any brand sold from Kerala​”.

Segment success

Hair care in India is enjoying an ongoing boost from from rising consumer consciousness in the country, according to makret researcher RNCOS.

The increasing influence of western culture and robust media promotion are major factors attributed to this rise, and Unilever’s acquisition suggests the company is keen to tap into hair care’s potential.

Market with ‘momentum’

Unilever global CEO, Paul Polman, recently described India as a market which is emerging with “momentum”, attributing this to the political and social progress being made in the country.

With such a complex and diverse country and 1.2 billion or more people, change is not easy, so I have huge respect for the work being done​,” he said in an interview with the Economic Times.

“The seeds have been planted and the plants are starting to grow​,” Polman said. “The pillars have been put in place that will result in a better India for everybody​.”

Details of the deal

The acquisition agreement outlines that during 2016, the brand’s former owner, Moson’s Group, will continue production of the ranges at its factory it Talassery on a contract basis, following which, HUL will take on the manufacturing.

According to the Business Standard, 10% of sales revenue is due to be given to Moson’s Group for the following five years, after which point, Unilever will take on full ownership of the brand.

In taking it on the brand, Indulekha, Unilever will be re-entering the hair oil segment for the first time since 2006, when it sold its Nihar range.

Related topics: Business & Financial, Hair Care

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