The washing powder wars

This article first appeared on / Author: Prelene Singh

JOHANNESBURG – An interesting generation gap may not lie in the area of technological advancements and the advent of social media but in a much more traditional space, that of laundry.

With the aggressive entry of new players to the market, the landscape for cleaning agents such as liquid soap and washing powder has dramatically changed in recent times.

Over the last six months brand managers have noticed a significant drop in the price of washing powder on the shelves.

Charmaine Lodewyk, General Manager at Brand Leadership, says Unilever brands in particular are facing significant competition.

“With the entrance of Maq and Ariel consumers have more choice than they did before.”

Manufacturers now have to fight for shelf space by implementing price cuts in order to sell their product.

Omo, Surf, Skip and Sunlight as well as no-name house brands are no longer leading the pack.

These older brands, which were the go-to brands for our parents and grandparents, are now being forced to up their game in the race for market share.

It seems that traditional brands, which have lived in the homes of their customers for a very long time, are losing ground to newer products.

Lodewyk says today’s consumers are more concerned about their pockets than brand loyalty.

“Most people are brand conscious and brand loyal, but I think now they vote with their pockets. We buy what we can afford.”

Listen to the full interview on the Midday Report.


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