For many, Tupperware’s market represents middle-class suburban India. Tupperware India, a leading direct selling company of premium food storage products, with an annual turnover of Rs 100 crore, and an active sales force of 55,000 women and 80 distributors, is gearing up to double its turnover by 2006.
Interestingly, Tupperware does not advertise through the mainstream media. Asked about the reason for this, Asha Gupta, General Manager, Tupperware India, says, “We do not advertise through the main media because we believe that it is more worthwhile to invest on our strong sales force and dealers. We like to channel our resources on the sales team and back it with promotional offers. We want our team to be our mouthpiece.”
So what kind of promotion does Tupperware do? In India, the company has launched kiosks in two major chains: Shoppers’ Stop and Ebony. The presence in the kiosks promotes brand awareness and helps to generate sales leads. Additionally, Tupperware India runs co-promotions with companies like Whirlpool and Proctor & Gamble to generate awareness and leads, she informed.
“The strategy we have adopted is focused on direct selling wherein we have involved homemakers to build a sales team and hold parties that inform prospective customers. The other thing that really worked for us is that we have Indianised the products to match customer expectations. For instance, we came up with ‘masala’ containers and wholesome sets comprising idli makers, oil cans, etc., “ she said.
Incidentally, the US-based Tupperware has 1,000 products in its portfolio. But, said Gupta, “Not all of them are available in India. In most of the countries, the range available is between 175 and 185. Here, since the market is developing and consumers are maturing to Tupperware, we have as of now 80 to 90 products in our Indian portfolio. However, the market is growing really fast and with our Indianised products manufactured in Hyderabad we intend to do even better.”
As a good corporate citizen initiative, the company has chosen this month to work towards the betterment of children. On every purchase of a Tupperware product worth Rs 200, one can buy a Sweet Server (set of 4) for Rs 375 and is entitled to another absolutely free. For each Sweet Server set sold, Tupperware is contributing Rs 20 to various agencies under CRY as well as Lovedale in Bangalore and Andh Kanya Prakash Gruh in Ahmedabad. The ‘Goodwill Month’ celebration is on in New Delhi, Kolkata, Jaipur, Chennai, Mumbai, Bangalore and Ahmedabad.
Asked if this is the first initiative, Gupta said, “Tupperware has been involved in charity since the time it began. Moreover, worldwide we had started the ‘Give a child a chance’ programme and have been involved in children-related fundraisers. In India, we were involved in raising funds for Kala Kriti, an organization that works for rag pickers. Now, that Children’s Day is approaching, we felt this is the right time to help children.”