Colgate Palmolive Asia Pacific buys 14% stake in Bombay Shaving Company

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Colgate Palmolive’s Asia Pacific unit has picked up 14% stake in India based men’s grooming start-up Bombay Shaving company. The company has made an initial investment of Rs. 18 Crores with the Hong Kong arm of the global consumer company which is leading the round and picking up a 14% stake in the Bombay shaving Company. This is the first time where Colgate’s Hong Kong arm is investing in any of the Indian consumer space. The early stage investor, Fireside Ventures already has a stake in the company and had also participated in this round of investment.

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The Bombay Shaving Company was founded in 2016 which supplies men’s grooming products on the subscription based model on the lines of any US based start-up Dollar Shave Club. The Dollar Shave Club was acquired by the Unilever for $1bn in the year 2016. The Bombay Shaving Company had initially started with the portfolio of the six products and it has therefore expanded into 32 products across the shaving, bathing and the skin care categories.

Building a consumer brand in India needs time, capital and longterm vision. After having proven product market fit with promising repeat rates and product response, we are now looking to scale the brand,” said Shantanu Deshpande, CEO at Bombay Shaving Company. “Colgate-Palmolive will help us with product development, scaling our distribution and building the brand.

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The startup is well known to make men’s grooming products those include the razors, blades, facial scrubs, shaving cream, post shave balms, shaving brushes, towels and travel kits. The portfolio has also expanded to include the shower gels and the disposable razors. This use and-throw razor will compete with the market leader Gillette in the affordable segment, said the CEO of Bombay Shaving Company. Bombay Shaving Company claims to have clocked annualised revenue of about Rs 16 crore in the quarter ended June.

The company is looking to close FY19 with over Rs 20 crore in revenue as it strengthens distribution. Apart from the traditional FMCG companies Emami, Hindustan Unilever, Pond’s, Garnier and Gillette, digital entities Beardo in which Marico has acquired 45% and Happily Unmarried’s Ustra where Wipro Consumer Care is an investor, are few among those in the list of competing companies with the Bombay Shaving Company.

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