Asian Paints - Adding Colours

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTG053
Case Length : 13 Pages
Period : 1997-2002
Pub Date : 2003
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Asian Paints Limited
Industry : Decorative Paints
Countries : India

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Background Note

The history of AP dates back to 1942. It was started by four entrepreneurs, Champaklal Choksey, Chimanlal Choksi, Suryakant Dani and Arvind Vakil, as a partnership firm for manufacturing paints, in a garage rented for Rs 75 a month.

In 1945, the partnership firm was turned into a private limited company named Asian Oil & Paint Co. Pvt. Ltd. And in the same year, its turnover touched Rs 0.35 million. In the 1940s, it was largely multinational companies such as British Paints and Jenson & Nicholson that dominated the Indian paints market.

Marketing Management Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Marketing Management, Case Studies

In order to increase revenue, AP concentrated on the smaller towns ignored by multinationals. In 1954, Asian Paints asked the famous cartoonist R.K. Laxman to create a mascot for the company, and from his pen was born - Gattu - which emerged as one of India's most memorable mascots (Refer Figure I).

In the 1950s, paints were sold in bulk and the smallest tin size available was 1 litre. However, AP's market research found out that in rural India, farmers who wished to paint the horns of their bullocks preferred to buy paint in small packs.

Soon AP came out with 50-ml packs, which became very popular. In 1957, AP achieved a breakthrough when its R&D department developed a process for producing international quality phenolic and maleic acid resins in its simple coal-furnace, with a hand-stirring process.

In the same year, AP set up a plant at Bhandup (Mumbai), to cater to the growing demand in urban areas...

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