Dabur bets big on professional grooming market

Last Updated: Sun, Jan 29, 2012 07:03 hrs

Dabur India Ltd is finetuning its plans to enter the professional grooming market through a variety of skincare products under the 'Fem' and 'Oxy' brands. Initially, these products would be sold directly to parlours and salons. Later, however, the company intends to start using its network of parlours to retail these products to consumers.

Presently, the professional grooming business contributes about 10-15 per cent to Dabur's total skin care revenue. The company plans to double its contribution over the next two-three years.

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Sanjay Singhal, marketing head (skincare), said, "The professional facial market in India is largely unorganised, with no national players in the category, giving Fem the first mover advantage here. Also, with Fem's already-strong equity and leadership in the facial bleach market, the company is confident of making bigger inroads into this category."

Fem Care Pharma, which was acquired by Dabur about three years ago, is well known for its facial bleaches across the country. The company is now extending this brand to salons and beauty parlours, with the launch of India's first body bleach - the 'Fem' turmeric body bleach and a range of 'Fem' professional facial kits. The company has about 30,000 parlours across more than 300 towns, more than those operated by other players. It also has robust marketing plans to expand this network to about 50,000, across more than 400 towns.

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Singhal says, "While other players like Lotus Herbal, VLCC and Shahnaz Hussain are just present in a few cities, we have an edge, in terms of market penetration. Facial services are the most sought after in Indian parlours and contribute up to 40-50 per cent of the company's total business. The facial service category is growing at 25-30 per cent a year."

The company is primarily engaging with professionals and beauticians across the country through seminars and meetings. It is tying up with renowned beauty experts and dermatologists to conduct training sessions and workshops for beauticians. Besides, it is also focusing on merchandising and store promotions.

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Singhal says the company's products are priced better than the competition so that parlours do not charge huge premiums from customers.

The professional grooming market in India is estimated at around Rs 800 crore and is growing at 15-20 per cent a year. Singhal says within a year of Oxylife facial kit's launch, there were about three lakh customers who opted for this treatment. "There are just 50 thousand parlours to cater to 40 crore women in India. Since it's a largely unorganised sector, there is a huge opportunity to coexist and grow the category to its fullest potential."

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