The detergent market is a mature growth segment in the Indian FMCG sector and has been growing in early double digits since the last decade. The industry is characterized by high MNC presence and several unorganized small players operating in the segment. MNC’s like Unilever and Procter & Gamble seem to dominate the Indian detergent terrain followed by some noteworthy Indian companies like Rohit Surfactants Pvt Ltd (Manufacturer of brand ‘Ghari’) and Nirma Ltd which have been able to make their mark in the segment.
1.1 Product Definition
Detergents are defined as complete washing or cleaning products, which contain among their ingredients an organic surface-active compound (Surfactant) that passes soil-removal properties. Frequently the term detergent is used synonymously with surfactant but common industry practice treats the surfactant as one component.
Detergents are very complex mixtures of many substances, all chosen to impart a particular action in cleaning.
Soaps are the earliest form of detergents, though in the present world the term detergent is used for synthetic detergents derived from petroleum products. In this report, by term detergent we mean to signify only laundry detergents or fabric washing agents.
Indian detergent sector can be divided into two broad categories- Synthetic detergents and oil based laundry soaps. The chart below illustrates the classification of the same.
Figure 1 Detergent Sector in India- Classification
Source: NPCS Research
Earlier the industry was dominated by oil based laundry soaps but gradually synthetic detergents made inroads into the industry. Over the time, synthetic detergent category has seen tremendous growth and today it is the most popular category of detergents. Synthetic detergents gained popularity on the back of better cleaning performance than oil based soaps.
The Indian market for detergents is fairly mature with high penetration levels. The chart below demonstrates the region-wise consumption break up of detergents in India.
Figure 2 Detergent Sector in India- Consumption by Region
1.2 Product Uses & Applications
· These are used in the domestic houses and in the industrial units for cleaning of clothes, garments etc.
· It is largely used in the laundry units and garment industries.
Detergent constitutes about 95 percent of total surfactants some of the important uses of washing cake and powder are in:-
a) Hand Soaps and Shampoo.
b) Special protective creams: cream including cold creams, vanishing creams, absorption base creams and creams for special purposes such as depilatories, deodorant.
d) Cleaning and degreasing of metals.
e) Cleaning of glass and containers.
f) Washing and treatment of food.
g) Cleaning of painted surfaces.
h) Cleaning of painted walls, roofs etc.
i) Household washing.
j) Removal of gelatin films.
k) For making antiseptic soaps.
l) Washing and cleaning of clothes, fabrics etc.
m) Industrial equipment cleanings etc.