Our aim is to get into LOreals top-five club of markets by 2020: Dinesh Dayal

Written by Lalitha Srinivasan | Updated: Jul 22 2014, 06:28am hrs
After acquiring Mumbai-based Cheryls Cosmeceuticals last year, LOreal India, part of the LOreal Group, is further scouting for acquisitions to extend its product offerings in India. Last year, LOreal Indias topline growth was at 16% and is currently ranked 16th amongst LOreal countries. The mass market will remain LOreal Indias main engine of growth this year. Hence, the company is gearing up to launch a slew of innovative brands to woo economy-conscious consumers. Dinesh Dayal, COO of LOreal India, talks to FEs Lalitha Srinivasan about the companys strategic plans.

Is LOreal India looking for more acquisitions in India

We are always open to looking at opportunities in brands that complement our portfolio of brands. It allows us to enter the market where we are not yet present or in a sector where we dont have enough presence.

How significant is LOral Indias role in worldwide operations

Last year, we grew at 16% in terms of top line when the overall beauty market was down to 6-7 % in terms of growth rate. We continue to grow at 2.5 times the market and our endeavour is to get into LOreals top-five club of markets by 2020. We are currently ranked 16th amongst LOreal countries and if we maintain our double-digit growth rate per year, we should be able to reach the top five ranking by 2020.

Will LOreal India focus more on mass market products to drive volumes What are your plans for other segments

The mass market will remain our main engine of growth. We are very clear that we do not want to do me-too products. Our role is to upgrade the Indian consumer by providing innovative products but also to have bridge products with modern alternatives for traditional products. We are relatively concentrated in a few large segments and hair colour remains a very important category for us on which we are constantly developing and innovating.

What is the update on LOral Groups investment in India

We have announced a commitment to invest R970 crore between 2011 and 2016. Today, we have most of our assets in place research & innovation, product development, manufacturing and distribution. We will continue to invest in our go to market facilities in terms of operations and distribution centres.

Whats going to be your core organic growth strategy How do you plan to take on your rivals HUL and P&G in India

We are a young player in India but one of the fastest-growing. Our challenge is to reach the rising middle class. Our strategy of Beauty for All or Universalisation where we adapt our global brands to each cultures specific needs is perfectly suited for this. We need to continue to be first to market new products and categories and reinvent tradition by bringing modernity and technology.

Are you extending distribution network in India Will there be a hike in your ad budget this year

We want to be strong in the urban market by upgrading our existing stores and enlarging our distribution by an additional 100,000 doors every year. Our ad budget increases in pace with our growth.