Jyothy Labs drops Sachin, zooms in on Madhavan

Purvita Chatterjee Mumbai | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on May 24, 2012

Sachin Tendulkar.   -  THE HINDU

It was thought to be a great catch for Jyothy Labs when it signed up Sachin Tendulkar a couple of years ago to endorse its Ujala fabric-care brand. But the company is now dropping the Little Master.

Mr M.P Ramachandran, CMD, Jyothy Labs, says: “Sachin is at his pinnacle but we would be discontinuing his contract after June as we expect our brand to speak for itself.”

Significantly, Jyothy is shedding its celebrity brand ambassador at a time when competition is hotting up with HUL's Rin brand also entering the fray with a fabric whitener.

The Jyothy decision could stem from the company's policy to rationalise ad spends, as well as its move to position the new Ujala extensions as regional rather than national. “Today, our share in the detergent market is negligible and we will restrict the Ujala detergent as a regional brand primarily,” explains Mr Ramachandran.

While Jyothy's 28-year-old Ujala fabric whitener enjoys a national presence with a 74 per cent market share in the category, the brand extensions have not fared well nationally. Ujala Stiff & Shine (launched in 2005 for coloured clothes) is a Rs 25-crore brand limited to Kerala.

Now, with the Henkel portfolio also under its fold, Jyothy would prefer to build a national presence with the German company's premium detergent brand — Henko Stain Champion. Henkel's detergent portfolio already straddles all segments of detergent market with Henko at the top end (Rs 130 for 1 kg), followed by Mr White (Rs 67 for 1 kg) and Chek at the bottom (Rs 40 for 1 kg).

Almost 70 per cent of Jyothy Labs' Rs 1,200-crore sales come from rural markets. With the Henkel brands in its basket, it is now hoping to capture the urban markets as well.

Madhavan in

And, even as Sachin Tendulkar may no longer bat for Ujala, Jyothy Labs has roped in actor Madhavan to endorse its soap brand Margo (which was originally launched by Calcutta Chemicals but sold to Henkel-Spic and which is now part of Jyothy's portfolio). This would be positioned as a national beauty brand.

Meanwhile, Jyothy's own soap brand Jeeva, created more than decade ago, will continue to remain a regional brand in its portfolio.

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Published on May 24, 2012
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