British FMCG major Reckitt on Tuesday reported its earnings for the first half of 2021 and said that revenue from its toilet cleaner brand Harpic was up by double digits in India. This comes on the back penetration increases in key markets and heightened demand for hygiene products in India due to the second wave.
Revenue growth for Dettol too remained strong in India despite operational and supply challenges, Reckitt said in a statement on Tuesday. India is the largest market for Dettol and Harpic.
However, Dettol’s net revenue declined in low double digits in the first half on the back of an ‘exceptional’ growth the brand saw in 2020 at the peak of the first COVID wave.
“Most major markets were lower year on year as demand normalises from the 2020 peak, but we are seeing early signs of stabilisation in some markets. In India, Dettol’s largest market, revenue growth remained strong despite operational and supply challenges. Overall, Dettol net revenue is currently over 40 percent higher on a two-year stack basis,” Reckitt said on Tuesday.
With the demand for hygiene products seeing a massive surge last year, Reckitt had said that Dettol soap bar became India’s top-selling soap brand by value share for the first time, while growing 62 percent in H1 of 2020. Similarly, Harpic too saw massive adoption in India. The company said during its full-year earnings for 2020 that Harpic was now used in over 100 million homes in India, up nearly three crore compared to 2019.
India was also amongst the largest contributors to growth for Reckitt in 2020 including the US and China.
In H1 of 2021, the 18 percent net revenue growth in Hygiene, it said, was led geographically by North America and, to a lesser extent, India.
Overall, the maker of Dettol, Harpic, Lysol and Veet reported net revenue growth of 3.7 percent and volume growth of 0.3 percent in H1 (excluding its infant nutrition business in China) and the performance was driven by continued growth in Hygiene, the company said.
“The markets are dynamic, reflecting several factors which we are closely monitoring, including the prevalence of COVID strains and government guidelines such as new lockdowns and social distancing,” Laxman Narasimhan, Chief Executive Officer said.
The company also flagged cost inflation concerns, which it said accelerated in the second time and will take time to offset with pricing actions being implemented in the back half of the year and early next year.
(Edited by : Aditi Gautam)
First Published: IST