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Wild Stone topples HUL's Axe in deo market

Wild Stone's brand size is expected to swell into about Rs 300 crore this financial year

Digbijay Mishra  |  Kolkata 

India's little penetrated but overcrowded Rs 2,500-crore deodorant market has thrown a surprise. A little known company, Mcnroe Consumer Products, which sells the Wild Stone brand, has toppled giants Hindustan Unilever and ITC in the June quarter, to reach the second spot in sales, according to Nielsen.

Sanjoy Sen, chief operations officer of the Wild Stone maker, told Business Standard, "We are determined to reach the numero uno spot." Sen said the Nielsen report clearly put Wild Stone (6.9 per cent share) ahead of HUL's Axe (6.8 per cent), now at number three, followed by relatively new entrant ITC's Engage (6.5 per cent). To capitalise on the lead, Sen said the had launched a variant, Wild Stone Grey, primarily targeted at companies and office goers. This is the 10th variant of Wild Stone.

"We are not behind by a huge margin with HUL in terms of distribution network. We are already present in 260,000-270,000 outlets and should expand further this year," he said, adding that Wild Stone's brand size would swell into about Rs 300 crore this financial year. In FY14, Wild Stone's revenue was a little over Rs 200 crore. Mcnroe's total revenue in FY14 was about Rs 250 crore.

  • Wild Stone's brand size is expected to swell into about Rs 300 crore this financial year
  • As of FY14, Wild Stone had revenues of little over Rs 200 crore
  • Mcnroe's, which sells Wild Stone, had a total revenue in the range of Rs 250 crore in FY14
  • Wild Stone is already present in 0.26 mn outlets and is looking to expand further this financial year
  • Experts are of the view that this market would grow at over 20% Y-o-Y for next three to four years at least

The Indian deo market has seen many entries in the recent past, the latest being Emami, which launched the HE brand. Experts have been bullish on this segment and have predicted the existing growth rate of a little over 20 per cent is likely to continue for at least three to four years. An analyst at Sharekhan had similar views an the segment, saying domestic companies beating giants and more companies entering the market would result in expansion of market size. "The low level of penetration in the segment opens dynamic prospects. More, consumers have been shifting brand loyalty in this category, with a multitude of me-too brands," the analyst added.

Sen indicated they had more launches ready for next month. He said the strongest market for them had been the eastern part of the country, followed by the North. "We entered the West a little late but have managed to gain some ground and work is on to penetrate and strengthen further into the western and southern markets," he said.

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First Published: Mon, July 28 2014. 00:48 IST