World's biggest toilet building spree is on progress in India
New Delhi : India is on its way to build the world’s biggest toilet-building spree in human history, and it’s a premium opportunity for companies.
Initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the $20 billion “Clean India” mission aims to construct 111 million toilets in five years.
“Besides promising to improve the health, safety and dignity of hundreds of millions of Indians, the national hygiene drive has spurred an 81 percent jump in sales of concrete building materials and 48 percent increase in bathroom and sanitaryware sales,” according to Euromonitor International. The mission is paying huge benefits to the firms from Tata Group, the nation’s largest conglomerate, to cleaning-products maker Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc.
Official source confirmed that around 80 million household toilets have been built since Modi government took the pledge to ensure universal sanitation coverage by October 2019, which will mark 150 years since the birth of independence leader Mahatma Gandhi. The scale-up of latrines and a nationwide campaign to promote their use is boosting market for products and services related to toilet and sanitation. It is predicted that the business will double to $62 billion by 2021.
“It’s the biggest, most successful behavior-change campaign in the world,” said Val Curtis, director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine’s Environmental Health Group, who has attended a program in India. “Every time I go there, I feel like I can’t sit down for weeks after because I’m excited about what they’re doing. It’s incredible.”
Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar, famed for sanitation-promoting movie “Toilet: Ek Prem Katha” (or “Toilet: A Love Story”), was appointed brand ambassador this month for Harpic, the bowl-cleaner made by Reckitt Benckiser. The Slough, England-based company, which also sells the disinfectant Dettol, is a leader of toilet-care market in India. Sources confirmed that the sales have climbed 11 percent to $105.7 million last year, Euromonitor data show.
“We are one of the most trusted brands in India, and we’ve always managed to outperform the market with Dettol,” Rakesh Kapoor India-born chief executive officer of Reckitt Benckiser said on a conference call in April, this year.