J&J to beef up skincare portfolio

Purvita Chatterjee Mumbai | Updated on August 21, 2014 Published on August 21, 2014

Johnson & Johnson (J&J) may have shed some brand equity in the baby care segment, but the company is making up for it by strengthening its skincare portfolio.

The US-based company, which brought skincare brands such as Clean & Clear and Neutrogena into India, is set to launch more global brands in the category.

“As the skincare market evolves, we will bring in more brands which have global equity. There are safe skin brands such as Aveeno in our global portfolio,” said Ganesh Bangalore, Marketing Manager, Consumer Products Division.

Though the multinational has been in India for 60 years, it had lost some of its corporate brand equity in the baby care segment after the Maharashtra Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had temporarily cancelled the company’s licence to manufacture baby care products.

Industry observers claim that J&J is trying to build on its other brands. “J&J is trying to promote its other product brands surrounding the damaged mother brand of the company. It wants to build the other brands, till such time the controversies bogging down the brand of the parent company go away,” said N Chandramouli at Trust Research Advisory, a brand analytics company.

Despite the FDA issue, baby care products such as soaps, talcs and creams continue to be the largest revenue generator for J&J in the country, though new categories like skincare are expected to be a key growth driver.

New terrain

“While Johnson’s Baby will continue to be the flagship brand, skincare is a relatively young business for J&J, and was re-launched about five years ago when we started investing heavily in the category. Clean & Clear is already the number two player in the face wash category,” said Bangalore.

Clean & Clear is pitted against players such as Himalaya and Hindustan Unilever’s Ponds, Pears and Fair & Lovely in the ₹1,700 crore face wash category, that is growing at 15 per cent.

J&J has been busy innovating and advertising the Clean & Clear brand to suit Indian teenagers. The company has seven skincare products under its franchise. “There will be products under Clean & Clear, which are unique to the benefits and needs of Indian teenagers, as we want to have a slew of products to address the lifestyle of a teen in this country,” added Bangalore.

Meanwhile, there are other skincare brands such as Neutrogena, which are currently being imported and distributed by J&J.

Published on August 21, 2014
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