Godrej Sara Lee, a joint venture company between the Godrej Group and the US-based Sara Lee Corporation, has acquired the distribution and marketing rights for Sara Lee's household and body care products in India and South Asia.
The acquisition is worth around $13 million (Rs 52 crore). With the acquisition, Godrej Sara Lee will distribute brands such as Kiwi Shoe Polish, Kiwi Dranex drain cleaner and hair-care product Brylcreem in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.
The turnover of GSL is Rs 625 crore. Godrej Sara Lee was formed in 1995, a year after Godrej acquired the Good Knight brand from R Mohan.
At present, Godrej Sara Lee's portfolio largely consists of household insecticide brands such as Hit and Good Knight in India, apart from Sara Lee's air purifier brand Ambi Pur.
The acquisition is seen as an effort to expand Sara Lee's presence in the Indian market. The company executives claim that the takeover will help the company grow and expand beyond the household care and insecticide segment.
"With the acquisition, GSL has become the distributors of Kiwi and Brylcreem in the country and the neighbouring markets. The business and operations of Sara Lee will be shifted to GSL from July 7," said Adi Godrej, chairman of the Godrej Group.
On the marketing initiatives to be undertaken by the company, Godrej said, "We have just taken over the operations, we have to study the market and then we will come up with the plans. The plans will unfold in the coming months."
Commenting on the acquisition, A Mahendran, managing director of GSL, said, "The acquisition will help in bringing all the brands under one company to manage efficiently its portfolio in South Asia. By moving these brands to GSL, Sara Lee will have access to Godrej's distribution network as well as marketing."