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From the Roots Out

By: Priyanka Bhattacharya
Posted: May 1, 2008, from the May 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.
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It is a billion dollar market out there. Literally, the Indian hair care market is hovering at the $1 billion mark. While it is a far smaller prospect than the developed markets in the West and comes in behind the other BRIC markets of Brazil, Russia and China, it still remains one of the fast-emerging economies in which consumers have more ready cash to spend on looking good.

With a GDP growth of approximately 7% annually over the last few years and with a consumer base highly interested in hair care, India is a market well worth investing in, and international hair care marketers are looking into available opportunities. Companies already marketing in India are experiencing a steady growth—even as more niche hair care brands and high-end brands enter the market to tap into the growth potential.

Industry estimates show that the Indian hair care market is growing at the rate of 125% year-on-year as consumers get more choosy about products. Consumers are also asked to make more choices as newer brands enter the market. With a growth rate of about 35% per annum, the professional hair care segment, which is more high-end, is emerging as a separate market segment.

“The mass market for hair care in India is booming,” says Aditya Agnihotri, regional manager-North, Wella India Haircosmetics Pvt Ltd. “It is evident from the fact that most supermarkets here now dedicate a separate section to showcase hair care products. It is not just shampoos and oils that are put there, but also conditioners, leave-ins, after shower products and even some styling products.”