<p>When Mumbai-based Jyothy Laboratories appointed ex-Reckitt India managing director S Raghunandan as its chief executive officer and whole-time director it made instant headlines. The IIM-Calcutta-and-BITS-Pilani alumnus is remembered for having one of the shortest possible stints a career chief executive can in a professional company: of just three weeks. That too, at Reckitt— a company where he had earned the MD position thanks to his stellar run at Paras Pharmaceuticals between June 2008 and August 2011. (Reckitt had acquired Paras in December 2010 for Rs 3,260 crore, which was eight times sales.)
This value accretion, say industry insiders, had been created thanks to the astute leadership of Raghunandan, who was responsible for brands such as Moov, D'Cold and Set Wet gel among others.
At Jyothy, Raghunandan, says his task is cut out: to ensure the merger between Henkel and Jyothy happens smoothly. The Rs 600-crore Henkel acquisition, done in 2011, effectively put Jyothy, the maker of Ujala Washing Powder and Ujala Blue, amongst the top five FMCG companies in the country with a combined turnover of Rs 1,300 crore and with a presence in categories such as fabric care, surface cleaners, personal care, oral care and household insecticides.
The company is relaunching Henkel brands, positioning them as national products in a bid to expand their footprint.