Patanjali Ayurved: The rise and rise of India's homegrown FMCG giant

The article explores the astonishing rise of homegrown Indian FMCG giant, Patanjali Ayurved, and how the company is building an alternative, natural brand to multinational competitors - and winning.

Patanjali Ayurved: The rise and rise of India's homegrown FMCG giant

Anil Thakraney

In the mid-eighties, a homegrown detergent manufacturer managed to give brand managers at Hindustan Unilever (then called Hindustan Lever) many sleepless nights. Karsanbhai Patel, a small time entrepreneur from the western Indian state of Gujarat, launched his detergent powder called Nirma in 1969 from inside a tiny shed. He then went on to grab an estimated 60% market share in the eighties, caused a huge dent in the sales of Surf, Lever's best selling brand at the time, before eventually fading to 10% market share today.


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