The Rs 10,412-crore Hindustan Lever has entered into a strategic tie-up with the Nasdaq listed iVillage Inc ($44.6 million turnover reported for the year ending December 1999), operator of iVillage.com to set up a women portal for the Indian market.
Scheduled to be launched in second half of 2001, the portal will be a division of Lakme Lever , which is a 100 per cent subsidiary of HLL. Hemant Bakshi, HLL’s head of e-commerce (consumer connectivity) will spearhead the initiative.
The portal will provide information, advice, services and solutions with the objective of becoming the destination website of choice for Indian women. The site will offer elements of iVillage.com’s portal including content, design, layout and an array of customised interactive services.
It will have multiple channels including health, careers, relationships, parenting, beauty, food and home. Some of the content will be localised to take into account the cultural background and regional needs of women in India.
For iVillage, the tie-up is in line with its international strategy to move to countries by forming joint ventures with market leaders in that country. In the US, iVillage has a joint venture with Unilever to create substance.com, a beauty channel that will be a substantive resource center for women to find solutions regarding beauty and personal care.