1. Introduction to HUL
Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) is India's largest Fast Moving Consumer Goods Company with a heritage of over 75 years in India and touches the lives of two out of three Indians.
HUL works to create a better future every day and helps people feel good, look good and get more out of life with brands and services that are good for them and good for others.
With over 35 brands spanning 20 distinct categories such as soaps, detergents, shampoos, skin care, toothpastes, deodorants, cosmetics, tea, coffee, packaged foods, ice cream, and water purifiers, the Company is a part of the everyday life of millions of consumers across India. Its portfolio includes leading ...view middle of the document...
 Its brands include Kwality Wall's ice cream, Knorr soups & meal makers, Lifebuoy, Lux, Pears, Breeze, Liril, Rexona, Hamam and Moti soaps, Pureit water purifier, Lipton tea, Brooke Bond (3 Roses, Taj Mahal, Taaza, Red Label) tea, Bru coffee, Pepsodent and Close Up toothpaste and brushes, and Surf, Rin and Wheel laundry detergents, Kissan squashes and jams, Annapurna salt and atta, Pond's talcs and creams, Vaseline lotions, Fair and Lovely creams, Lakmé beauty products, Clear, Clinic Plus, Clinic All Clear, Sunsilk and Dove shampoos, Vim dishwash, Ala bleach, Domex disinfectant, Modern Bread, Axe deosprays and Comfort fabric softeners.
Soon after followed Lifebuoy in 1895 and other famous brands like Pears, Lux and Vim. Vanaspati was launched in 1918 and the famous Dalda brand came to the market in 1937.
In 1931, Unilever set up its first Indian subsidiary, Hindustan Vanaspati Manufacturing Company, followed by Lever Brothers India Limited (1933) and United Traders Limited (1935). These three companies merged to form HUL in November 1956; HUL offered 10% of its equity to the Indian public, being the first among the foreign subsidiaries to do so. Unilever now holds 52.10% equity in the company. The rest of the shareholding is distributed among about 360,675 individual shareholders and financial institutions.
The erstwhile Brooke Bond's presence in India dates back to 1900. By 1903, the company had launched Red Label tea in the country. In 1912, Brooke Bond & Co. India Limited was formed. Brooke Bond joined the Unilever fold in 1984 through an international acquisition. The erstwhile Lipton's links with India were forged in 1898. Unilever acquired Lipton in 1972, and in 1977 Lipton Tea (India) Limited was incorporated.
Pond's (India) Limited had been present in India since 1947. It joined the Unilever fold through an international acquisition of Chesebrough Pond's USA in 1986.
Since the very early years, HUL has vigorously responded to the stimulus of economic growth. The growth process has been accompanied by judicious diversification, always in line with Indian opinions and aspirations.
The liberalisation of the Indian economy, started in 1991, clearly marked an inflexion in HUL's and the Group's growth curve. Removal of the regulatory framework allowed the company to explore every single product and opportunity segment, without any constraints on production capacity.
Simultaneously, deregulation permitted alliances, acquisitions and mergers. In one of the most visible and talked about events of India's corporate history, the erstwhile Tata Oil Mills Company (TOMCO) merged with HUL, effective from April 1, 1993. In 1996, HUL and yet another Tata company, Lakme Limited, formed a 50:50 joint venture, Lakme Unilever Limited, to market Lakme's market-leading cosmetics and other appropriate products of both the companies. Subsequently in 1998, Lakme Limited sold its brands to HUL and divested its 50% stake in the...