The over-the-counter antiseptic cream market in India has an annual sales volume of 2.8 million litres, valued at Rs. 1.8 billion. In this, Boroline is the eminent frontrunner with a market share of 21% (Source: ORG-MARG). Hundreds of thousands of satisfied consumers across the length and breadth of India, also use Boroline as a value-for-money option to guard and cure against dry skin problems during the winter months. India’s gigantic physical dimensions make creating a pan-India distribution network a difficult task. Yet Boroline’s strong distribution system ensures that loyal consumers get the tube of their favourite antiseptic skin cream no matter where they are. Some impressive market data substantiates this assertion: the brand enjoys a 34.2% dealer penetration, directly servicing 300,000 retail outlets across India.
Boroline has zealously guarded its position as one of the most trusted over-the-counter (OTC) medicines for more than three generations of Indians. This puts Boroline in a league of its own. Most Indians have used it or have seen their relatives and friends use it.
The brand enjoys high brand recall across generations, making it a truly heritage brand. Boroline is firmly entrenched as the undisputed brand leader in its category. The cult status of Boroline is due to a single reason: quality. Long-term users continue to find their old friend Boroline unchanged in terms of efficacy and quality.
New users, especially youngsters, discover the truth in their elders’ belief in Boroline’s quality and become new users. Boroline’s brand management thus transcends the realms of marketing and enters the territory of Total Quality Management (TQM) requiring significant inputs towards continuous upgradation of production technologies and strict adherence to quality standards in all spheres. As part of its stringent quality control measures, the company has refrained from off-loading production to contract manufacturers.
The company spends 5% of its annual earnings on research and development. As a result, newer production technologies have been developed resulting in enhanced operational efficiencies. A positive ripple effect follows, keeping the prices of Boroline down. Efficient distribution coupled with high productivity have led to a happy state of affairs: Boroline-loyalists have no complaints about either accessability or affordability of their favourite product – a boon in the extremely price sensitive Indian mass market.
Over the years Boroline has become a responsible ensured that its packaging is entirely recyclable. In its factory near Kolkata, special plantation projects contribute to ensure environmental protection as a part of the “Save Trees” campaign. In addition to these, Boroline also maintains a large water reservoir of 6000 sq.mts to provide a balanced ecosystem, biodegrading all pre-treated effluents. From across India, numerous economically under-privileged, terminally ill patients and children requiring heart surgery have applied to Boroline and received financial assistance for treatment.
Boroline is the happy outcome of the heady nationalistic wave that had engulfed all Indians during the pre-Independence era. Its founder, Gourmohan Dutta, belonged to the rich merchant class of Calcutta. He was already an established trader of imported goods, when he decided to join the Swadeshi movement. A practical patriot, he was convinced that the best way to help India was to contribute to her economic self-sufficiency. To actively do this, he decided to manufacture products of a quality equivalent to their foreign counterparts. It was a daunting task. Many dissuaded him against this venture. But Gourmohan Dutta followed his heart. He stopped importing goods altogether. With a glorious dream of free and
self-sufficient India in his heart, he started manufacturing medicines. One of them would be the legendary green tube – Boroline. It had a humble beginning in his house in 1929. The celebrated journey had begun. To establish the brand identity, the logo was developed carefully. For all Indians, and especially the merchant class, the Elephant God – or Ganesha – has an enormous significance. The elephant signifies steadiness. It is also synonymous with success or ‘siddhi‘. Keeping these in mind, Dutta chose the elephant as Boroline’s logo
hoping that it would bestow luck and spell success for what was still considered a reckless venture. The logo caught on immediately. In the rural heartland and for the millions who cannot
read, Boroline is still known as the ‘hathiwala cream’ (cream with the elephant logo).
The name Boroline is derived from its ingredients. “Boro” from boric powder, which