Slowdown in growth, coupled with a maturing market, is forcing the domestic herbal shampoo makers to take recourse to a brand-centric strategy.
Last week, Cavinkare relaunched its 12-year-old brand Nyle with focus on the youth. The newly-introduced Nyle comes not only with a new formulation, but also a brand new packaging and a brand ambassador for the first time.
“Earlier, consumers preferred herbal shampoos over others. But as the market is slowly maturing the trend is changing. This is the rationale behind the brand rejig,” said Ramesh Viswanathan, vice president (marketing), Cavinkare.
“Consumers no longer fear cosmetic shampoos and are attracted to them owing to their aspirational value,” said Viswanathan.
As a result, the 8200 tonne herbal segment, valued at Rs 200 crore, declined by 3 per cent in the past one year. The compounded growth of the segment over the last three years was at 3 per cent compared with the overall shampoo segment growth of 15 per cent.
While at one level the consumers seem to be reaching out to all things natural, with even cosmetic market leader Clinic Plus introducing its ayurvedic variant, the existing players are not growing as expected.
While Vatika, the leader in the herbal segment has seen its market share in the overall shampoo category going up to 4.4 per cent in the first quarter of this financial year compared with 4 per cent in the corresponding quarter last fiscal, Ayur, another player in the same space, has seen its share fall to 3.8 per cent in the first quarter this fiscal from 4 per cent in the same period last year.
Vatika, which has a market share of about 32 per cent in the herbal shampoos category, is said to be planning new product launches in two quarters to combat the saturation in the herbal and anti-dandruff categories in which it operates.
A Dabur spokesperson said the company was planning to revamp packaging and communication strategy for its brands. Herbal shampoo sales are typically higher in the northern and western markets, with the southern states preferring cosmetic shampoos. With the relaunch, Nyle expects market share within the category to go up.