Finally, Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) is all set to test its water product in February. Informed sources said the product would first be test-marketed in southern parts of the country, and based on the results of the test-market, the company would decide on the timing of the final launch. The product will be tested thoroughly before it is launched, sources added.
The much-awaited water foray of HLL, which is a dominant player in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) market and a leader in most of the sectors that it is present, can thus be expected to be launched formally a few months down the line.
HLL’s water plan, which is not strictly bottled water, but a concept dealing with portable water and purification of water, is likely to come under a new brand name. However, the exact details of the product and the brand are still under wraps.
HLL’s water launch has been delayed by more than two years since the company first announced its intention to foray into this new sector. The company had allayed fears that it was not going to get into the over-crowded bottled water market. The multinational was more keen on the mass market.
The foray into water is part of HLL’s New Ventures which were derived from Project Millennium. The other New Ventures of the multinational are Project Shakti, the company’s rural initiative with self-help groups, Hindustan Lever Network, the direct selling venture and Sangam Direct, the retailing venture. Ayush, HLL’s ayurvedic health initiative, was earlier part of its new ventures, but was later transferred to its personal products division, while Aviance was integrated as part of Hindustan Lever Network.