Colgate hires New MD CEO from HUL

Colgate Palmolive India (CPI) has informed the following top management changes –

  • The current CEO and MD, Mr. Ram Raghavan has been promoted as President, Enterprise Oral Care, for Colgate Palmolive Company, the parent Company of CPI and will be based out of its headquarter at New York.
  • In place of Ram, CPI has hired Ms Prabha Narasimhan as the new MD CEO. Prabha currently is the Executive Director at Hindustan Unilever (HUL).

To me it’s one veteran being replaced with another in normal course and personally would not read too much into it.

  • Ram has been with Colgate for more than 24 years in various global roles.
  • Prabha likewise is a HUL veteran with more than 14 yrs and a total work experience of almost 25 years.

CPI has been facing tough challenge from the likes of Dabur and Patanjali. Though the operational performance continues to be ok, it’s missing the excitement of positive surprises. CPI’s sales, profits and stock price have grown at a CAGR of 8-10% over the last 10 years.

A new hire form outside is surely going to come with some different ideas and strategy. However, I will wait for proofs whether those strategies are working or not.

Also HUL has the benefit of being present across categories whereas CPI is a single category oral care company. This has it’s own advantages and disadvantages. How well Prabha manages those, remains to be seen.

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