Indian equity markets continued to trade in the negative during the last two hours of trade after opening on a weak note. Amongst sectoral indices, there was mixed performance with FMCG and realty stocks leading the list of gainers while IT and metal stocks witnessed maximum selling pressure.
FMCG stocks are trading strong led by Dabur and Pidilite Industries. According to a leading financial daily, Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) is planning to extend its Dove brand into the hair care segment by launching Dove hair oil. The company intends to launch the product at a price of Rs 180-200 for a 100 ml bottle thereby pricing it more than rival brands like Marico's Parachute Scalp Therapie and Bajaj Almond Drops. This would make Dove hair oil a super premium product. Three variants of the hair oil are expected to get launched in November. We may note here that earlier, around 6 years ago, HUL had exited the hair oil business when it sold off its Nihar brand to Marico. The market for hair oil in India is estimated at Rs 128 bn.
Auto stocks are trading in the green led by Tube Investments and Force Motors. According to a leading financial daily, Tata Motors has launched its premium pick-up Xenon and it expects the new product to push up its market share in the segment to 25-30%. The new Xenon is priced in the range of Rs 0.54-0.63 m. Currently the company commands 20% share in the pick-up segment. Tata Motors had launched the Xenon three years ago in the global markets, and has so far sold 35,000 units in markets like southern Europe, South Africa, Thailand and Italy. In the domestic market, Xenon is now available in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu, and Punjab will be the next destination. The company plans to ramp up production capacity to 1,000-1,200 units per month going forward. It may launch a few variants of the vehicle by December.