Colgate Shifts Innovation Focus From Growing Sales In Core Segments To Expanding Categories
Colgate shifts innovation focus to product launches that expand categories and grow sales for the long term. “We have to expand the pie in the categories that we compete … we’re not going to do that with simply core adjacencies,” says CEO Noel Wallace.
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Higher material and packaging costs in North America drove Colgate’s Q2 operating profit down 21%. Oral care sales were the bright spot in an otherwise difficult quarter in North America, where total sales declined 4% due to COVID-related demand in 2020 and competitive pressure.
Strategies including enhanced capabilities, more external talent and online-only launches boosted e-commerce business with 50% sales growth in the fourth quarter. Net sales are anticipated to grow 4% to 7% in 2021.
Noel Wallace, also named to board, says Colgate will continue to prioritize brand building, innovation in current product segments, expanding in channels and markets, maximizing e-commerce growth and investing to drive penetration in growing populations. He joined the oral, personal and home care product and pet nutrition company in 1987 and has served in senior management roles around the world.