Friday, September 21, 2007

4Ping Brandalysis: Tortoise Mosquito Repellent

Tortoise Mosquito Repellent: Kachhua Jalao, Macchar Bhagao

Tortoise mosquito repellent coil is a 40 years old brand owned by Bombay Chemicals Ltd (BCL). Tortoise mosquito repellent dominated around 67% of market till 1994 and was a generic name in the product category. Infact “Kachhua Jalao, Machchar Bhagao” was one of very famous campaign of those days with humorous element.

Mosquito repellent’s market can be divided in to coil, mat, vaporizer, aerosol and cream with total marketing size of Rs. 1600 cr. and growing at the annual rate of 15%. This market stood at Rs. 400 Cr in 1997. It attracted multinationals like Reckitt Benkisser, Sara Lee in late 90’s and witnessed lot of happenings in the market. AllOut, the brand by Karamchand Appliences created a new sengment of liquid vaporizer.

Mosquito repellent has been growing category because of four month long monsoon season in most of the parts of India. There are around 300 spices of mosquitoes and are responsible for malaria, dengue fever and chikungunya.

The coil segment of the market is around 35% of total market size and dominated by Mortein and Good Night, brands by Reckitt Benkiser and Godrej Sara Lee respectively.

Tortoise (Kachhua) coil was pioneer brand in the Indian market and was the first player to provide solution to get rid of mosquitoes. But this pioneer brand could not stand against MNC players. Company failed to upgrade its product in accordance the market need and total market share came down to 12% in 2000. Mortein introduced red colour coil which is believed to be long lasting than green colour coil. Mat and aerosol was also growing category in the urban market.

In effort to rejuvenate the historical brand, Bombay Chemical Ltd. introduced Tortoise Active, the herbal coil. They promoted hazards of allethrin based coil on major TV channels like Zee and Sony. In 2002, it also introduced Tortoise Lazor in strategic tie up with Byers India. Tortoise Lazor contained NAK (A molecule patented by Byers AG) based coil. NAK acts on the wing of mosquitoes thus reducing speed of flight. So mosquitoes never come near the area and even it doest it can not fly and grounded to death for want to water. It was claimed by the company that NAK based coil is less toxic and two times more effective than allethrin based coil. Company was so confident about the claim that they went on to give money back guarantee on purchase. Sales team of BCL also conducted live demonstration to convince distribution about benefits of the product. For Tortoise NAK, company also adopted the strategy to give live demonstration of product in some backward area where the water-logging problem was high. All this efforts helped company to regain it market share a little bit but it could not gain the market leader status and top of the mind recall.
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