Sebamed mulls entry into food, nutrition business

NEW DELHI : The local arm of German personal care company Sebamed is exploring opportunities to foray into the health and nutrition business, including categories such as immunity-building products, multi-vitamins, vitamin gummies and baby nutrition.

The move comes amid the company’s plans to tap into the broader market for packaged consumer goods, Shashi Ranjan, country head of Sebamed India, said. It is evaluating both organic and inorganic opportunities, he added. “We constantly monitor the need gaps in our portfolio and see what products or categories must be brought in across categories where we operate, whether personal care—skin, hair, wash. If there are new formats or new categories coming up, we constantly evaluate. In fact, we are also getting into a new business, which is food and nutrition,” Ranjan said. If the company’s plan goes through, India will be the first market for Sebamed’s nutrition and health play.

Products for the health and nutrition range are in research phase and could be rolled out this year. “We are now looking at two categories. One, general immunity, it could be ready-to-drink or even gummies as a format, or multi-vitamins. We have embarked on the journey but we will monitor our product portfolio and bring something which fills the need gaps for consumers. The products are likely to be launched under a different brand,” he added.

The company’s move points to a growing interest in health and nutrition. In December, India’s top consumer goods company, Hindustan Unilever Ltd, announced investments in two companies, Zywie Ventures (Oziva) and Wellbeing Nutrition, to strengthen its play in the health sector.

Sebamed is a recent entrant in India’s fast-moving consumer goods space. Its products are sold in 65,000 outlets and are also available online. Around 35% of the company’s sales come from e-commerce platforms. “We are present in over 100 cities. We continue to build both width and depth of distribution and plan to double this number every second year. Both in terms of number of outlets where we have direct reach, as well as number of cities we want to get into,” said Ranjan.

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