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India helps Reckitt drive quarterly growth in developing markets

Its toilet cleaning brand Harpic grew high-single-digits, with particularly strong growth in India, driven by increased distribution and product upgrades, the maker of Dettol and Durex brands said in its first quarter earnings announced FridayPremium
Its toilet cleaning brand Harpic grew high-single-digits, with particularly strong growth in India, driven by increased distribution and product upgrades, the maker of Dettol and Durex brands said in its first quarter earnings announced Friday

  • British consumer goods major Reckitt said revenues in developing markets during the first quarter grew 5.7% on a like-for-like basis, driven by markets such as Latin America, India and Greater China

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NEW DELHI : British consumer goods major Reckitt said revenues in developing markets during the first quarter grew 5.7% on a like-for-like basis, driven by markets such as Latin America, India and Greater China.

Its toilet cleaning brand Harpic grew high-single-digits, with particularly strong growth in India, driven by increased distribution and product upgrades, the maker of Dettol and Durex brands said in its first quarter earnings announced Friday.

India is the largest market for the brand—Harpic. Reckitt’s portfolio of hygiene brands have benefitted since the onset of the pandemic as covid increased demand for hand and floor cleaners.

“In India, we continue to drive increased distribution," the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Laxman Narasimhan said in a post earnings call.

During the quarter the company also completed the sale of prickly heat powder brand Dermicool to Emami Ltd., as part of its portfolio management strategy.

For the quarter, Reckitt reported a 5.6% jump in sales globally largely driven by price hikes taken by the company. The company’s sales growth beat street expectations.

Narasimhan said the company made a strong start to the year across all business units and geographies despite a challenging operating environment.

“Investments we have made in brand building, innovation, and execution, have resulted in broad-based market share gains. These, coupled with pricing and revenue management actions, stand us in good stead to maintain this positive momentum," he said.

Narasimhan cautioned that the future operating environment remains highly unpredictable.

“As we look to the balance of the year, the operating environment remains highly unpredictable. We are well placed to address these market dynamics through the strength of our brands, our favourable product mix, our productivity program and the responsible pricing initiatives already undertaken, with scope to take further actions," he added.

Harpic falls under the company’s hygiene portfolio, which also includes brands such as Lysol, Air Wick, and Vanish. In 2020, Harpic reported a record jump in household penetration in India, reaching 100 million homes, which is nearly 30 million more than in 2019. India was among Reckitt’s “largest contributors to growth" along with America and China for the year ended 31 December 2020, the company said then.

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