With sales of toothpaste and toothbrush coming under stress, FMCG major Colgate-Palmolive India is looking to diversify beyond oral care with a focus on the personal care segment.

“We look to strengthen the Palmolive equity that has existed for 73 years in India. Palmolive is underserved equity and has a 60 per cent plus awareness in a fragmented market of personal care. It is unusual and the onus is on us to translate the high level of latent equity into actual sales. We have decided to double down our focus on body care between body wash and hand wash. Body wash is a small category and has a low penetration — this gives us a very high headroom to grow. Palmolive will be one of the few brands that play in body wash and not in soap, allowing us to make the transition from soap to body wash much faster among premium consumers,” said Prabha Narasimhan, MD & CEO, Colgate-Palmolive India, during the earnings call.

Drivers to growth

To grow the business, the company plans on focussing on creating brand superiority, innovative products, assortment distribution and creating mental availability with Palmolive. The company offers body washes in the range of ₹172-472.

In the oral care category, the company stated that lower-price stock keeping units (SKUs) are increasing the penetration in rural areas while 55 per cent of rural households do not brush daily. “In rural, it is important to make sure we have access; we have ₹10 and ₹20 SKU. The ₹20 SKU is doing well and helping us drive both consumption and usage,” added Narasimhan.

Colgate-Palmolive India Ltd posted a 2.16 per cent dip in its consolidated net profit for Q4 FY23 at ₹316 crore compared with ₹323 crore in the same quarter last year. Sequentially, the profit grew 30 per cent compared with ₹243 crore in Q3.