Friday, May 27, 2005

Hair colour market booms India

Fast growing hair colour market booms India with different National and International brands. Chocolate, almond, honey, caramel... these all not only flavours of ice-cream on a dessert menu? Maybe, but they also represent the new, funky shades of hair colour that have entered the Indian market in the past few years. After L’Oreal, Godrej and Revlon, the new player to enter the Indian retail market is German major Henkel-Schwarzkopf. Making its India debut in 2003, Schwa-rzkopf was a salon brand. Now, the retail brand Henkel has made its way to shop shelves. For the moment, its products are imported. Today, the total hair colour industry in India is around Rs 650 crore. This is further divided into two segments. The Rs 450 crore retail segment, which is growing at a 20 per cent clip annually . According to market research Godrej’s market share at 40 per cent, followed by L’Oreal at 15 per cent and Revlon at 8 per cent. Rest of the brands make up the remaining 37 per cent. The two big brands in the salon category are multinationals L’Oreal and Schwarzkopf. The professional segment encompasses not only the selling of hair colour products but also the training of stylists at high-end salons. Industry sources peg Schwarzkopf’s share at 24 per cent with L’Oreal dominating at 76 per cent. Today, while Godrej is largely mass-based, selling its Colour Soft and Renew brands at Rs 99 and Rs 65 respectively, both L’Oreal and Schwarzkopf straddle different price segments. While L’Oreal’s sub-brand Garnier Colour Naturals carries a tag of Rs 99, its Excellence is priced at Rs 399. Today, if there are more brands in the Indian market, it’s largely due to demand. When hair colours first came to India, more than a decade ago, it was largely to cover grey hair.But with the increasing number of youth in the country, it has become a fashion statement, especially with the young and trendy. Hair colours were traditionally aimed at the 15-45 age female segment. But market research shows that there was a growing population of 15-45 males which patronised the category in a big way. “This is because of the corporate culture that places an emphasis on young male employees looking smart and trendy. That’s why all the players have plans to modify existing products, launch new products and target different geographic segments and age-groups. Godrej is in the process of developing additional colours in its Colour Soft range. There are plans to launch an advertising campaign reassuring the public about concerns about the safety of hair colour. This, say industry sources, is largely to quell the controversies surrounding the after-effects of Godrej products. The newly launched Henkel is now testing the waters. After gauging the initial response, there are plans to launch new variants in the coming months. Meanwhile, it is strengthening its Schwarzkopf salon brand. It plans to launch Indola at 30 per cent lower than its premium brand Igora Royale. And the target audience? Lower-end salons in smaller cities. They will also train salon stylists in smaller cities. There’s also the new Igora Action Paint, a ‘weekend’ product aimed at teens. Even L’Oreal, which is constantly revamping its retail colour palette, is now concentrating on the high value salon business. Having entered this category in 1997 with the premium Majirel (priced at Rs 210), L’Oreal is now tapping the mass-based middle segment. In February, it launched Matrix (Rs 119), the brand aquired from Bristol Myers five years ago. It is positioned as ‘fun and lively’ compared to its ‘sophisticated’ counterpart. There are plans to penetrate every salon in Mumbai and Delhi before taking Matrix to second-tier towns. Now a days several National and international brands in hair colour market are available in India.Many more making their way, well the market is vast.