| HBS Case Collection
(Revised June 2007)
Unilever in India: Hindustan Lever's Project Shakti--Marketing FMCG to the Rural Consumer
With liberalization of India's economy and the opening up of markets to foreign multinationals such as Procter & Gamble, the Indian subsidiary of Unilever--Hindustan Lever Ltd. (HLL)--was under pressure to grow revenues and profits. HLL had a long and stellar record of market leadership in India (with market shares of nearly 60%) in categories such as soap, detergent, and shampoos. Documents HLL's innovative approach to penetrate rural markets (with populations less than 1,000), where two-thirds of India's population lives, with a scheme named "Shakti" (meaning empowerment). The central question is: How should the company scale Shakti and make it profitable?
Market Entry and Exit;
Multinational Firms and Management;
Consumer Products Industry;
Beauty and Cosmetics Industry;