Close-Up was one of the earlier toothpastes to be launched in India.

Pepsodent – Charting Growth in Indian Oral Care Market through Segmentation


Close-Up was one of the earlier toothpastes to be launched in India.

Hindustan Lever Limited (HLL), the Indian arm of Unilever, the multinational FMCG major, tried to increase its market share in the Indian oral care market through the launch of its toothpaste brand Pepsodent. The caselet speaks about the methods the company adopted to position Pepsodent as a toothpaste aimed at providing the oral health benefit. The caselet examines the campaigns undertaken by the company to promote the brand among its target market.


» The role of product differentiation in making a consumer try out a new product

» How competitive advantages get eroded quickly in a marketplace

» The need to align oral care awareness programs with promotional campaigns for developing the market for oral care


Colgate-Palmolive (India) Pvt. Ltd. (CPPL) was the company which introduced toothpaste in India with the launch of Colgate Dental Cream (CDC) in 1937.  Till the 1980s, the company faced very little in the way of competition and enjoyed the position of market leader. The early 1980s saw the launch of Promise by the Balsara Group…

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Close-Up was one of the earlier toothpastes to be launched in India. It also had a clear positioning – offering the freshness benefit to the consumer. Yet the market share of the brand came down. What are the possible reasons for the decline in the share of Close-Up over the years?

  2. What were the advantages that HLL derived by having two brands targeting two different sections of consumers?

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