The nirma success story of how an Indian Entrepreneur took on the big MNCs and rewrote the rules of business :
It was in 1969 that Dr. Karsanbhai Patel started Nirma andwent on to create a whole new segment in the Indian domestic detergent market.During that time the domestic detergent market only had the premium segment and there were very few companies , mainly the MNCs , which were into this business.
Karsanbhai Patel used to make detergent powder in thebackyard of his house in Ahmedabad and then carry out door to door selling of his hand made product.He gave a money back guarantee with every pack that was sold.Karsanbhai Patelmanaged to offer his detergent powder for Rs. 3 per kgwhen the cheapest detergent at that time was Rs.13 per kgand so he was able to successfully target the middle and lower middle income segment.
Sabki Pasand Nirma…
Nirma became a huge success and all this was a result of Karsanbhai Patel’s entrepreneurial skills.
Karsanbhai Patel had good knowledge of chemicals and he came up with Nirma detergent which was a result of innovative combination of the important ingredients.Indigenous method was used ,and also the detergent was more environment friendly.
Consumers now had a quality detergent powder , having anaffordable price tag.
The process of detergent production was labour intensive and this gave employment to a large number of people.Nirma focused on cost reduction strategies to make a place for itself in the market.Nirma has always been known for offering quality products at afforbable prices and thus creating good value for the consumer’s money.
In the 1980s nirma moved ahead of Surf , a detergent by HLL , to caputre a large market share.Later, Nirma successfully entered in the premium segment of soaps and detergents.Nirma went on to become the largest detergent and the second largest soap company in India.Nirma had more than 35% market share in the detergent segment and around 20 % market share in the toilet soap segment.The company got listed on the stock exchanges in the year 1994.
Nirma adopted backward integration strategy for theregular supply of raw materials,90 % of which they manufacture themselves.Nirma also gave due importance tomodernization ,expansion and upgradation of the production facilities.The company also made sure that it uses the latest technology and infrastructure.
As far as Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is concerned, Nirma has made some good efforts by starting Nirma Education & Research Foundation (NERF) in the year 1994 for the purpose of running various educational institutes.Nirma has also set up Nirma labs , which prepares aspiring entrepreneurs to effectively face the different business challenges.Nirma also runs Nirma Memorial Trust ,Nirma Foundation and Chanasma Ruppur Gram Vikas Trust as a part of their effort as a socially responsible corporate citizen.
The company that was started in 1969 with just one manwho used to deliver his product from one house to the other,today employs around 14 thousand people and has a turnover of more than $ 500 million. In 2004 Nirma’s annual sales were as high as 800000 tonnes.According to Forbes in2005 Karsanbhai Patel’s net worth was $ 640 million.