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Why we are staging a comeback 'Colgate Marketing Director

Published by Tribune on Tue, 17 Mar 2015

The Marketing Director, Colgate Palm Olive Nigeria, Mrs Hannah Oyebanjo, in this interview, gives reasons the company was away from the nation's market for over a decade and the recent introduction of another toothpaste brand into the market. ExcerptWhy Colgate is staging a come-backThe truth is that Colgate was in Nigeria about 15 years ago, but later moved out of the country. The company was in Nigeria with certain partner and the decision was taken for it to pull out. But, that has become history. The truth is in the 15 years of its absence, Colgate products had never ceased to be in this market. You will always find the products. We have Colgate toothbrushes and toothpaste everywhere. This shows that Nigerians have come to accept the brand, they've come to reckon with the product and they've come to like the product. Many Nigerians, who travel abroad, always come home with Colgate products, not just Colgate toothpaste but our soaps, so the business therefore saw the need to come back.Why our products are seen as 'elitist'Colgate is a quality product when it comes to what is put into it. When it comes to innovation, Colgate leads the oral care market globally, that is a fact. Therefore, you see many people travel and bring it into the country. And because nobody was regulating the whole thing, they were pricing it so high. Apparently, what you find is that our prices are very much competitive now. We are presenting to you a spectrum of products, across different segments.So, from the Colgate perspective, we have made this product reachable and affordable. But we need to continue to educate the trade and also educate the consumers so that they know they can reach their products. For instance, you will agree with me that the price of the new product, despite the technology and innovation behind it, still remains at the same old price. Definitely that amount for a Colgate that is the number one and the first launched sugar-acid neutraliser technology in Nigeria is a social course.Efforts being made to give Nigerians public oral educationI can tell you that even before we started selling in Nigeria, we had partnered with Alliance for Cavity Free Future (ACFF), a global initiative, this is a global initiative supported by Colgate and what they do is to say we must have focused initiative to ensure that we do away with cavities. They have a vision that says children that will be born as from 2026 will not even know what cavity is. So, that's a very big social cause, and Nigeria is one of the countries we have launched the ACFF chapter, with the president of the Nigerian Dental Association (NDA), being the president of ACFF in Nigeria. There is another initiative that we have, Best Mouth, Best Future (BMBF) that focuses on educating children on basic oral hygiene. So, we are in relationship with the Ministry of Health, Nigerian Dental Association, the dentists and those who are the key pillars in the society to ensure that Colgate adds its voice to educating Nigerians on basic oral care.Why introducing Colgate Maximum Cavity Protection Plus Sugar Acid Neutraliser toothpaste.It is an attempt at providing the first toothpaste for the whole family with the exclusive sugar acid neutraliser technology that fights cavities by neutralising sugar acids right in the dental plaque.Sugar acid neutraliser technology actually works biologically by targeting the primary cause of caries, the plaque biofilm, to reduce the effects of acids produced from sugars before they can harm the teeth. Specifically, it promotes the beneficial activity of arginolytic bacteria that convert arginine into ammonia to directly neutralise the 'sugar acids' in plaque, creating a healthier environment for the teeth.Sugar acid neutraliser is Colgate's trademark name for the technology, consisting of arginine and an insoluble calcium compound, which it has developed and added to fluoride toothpaste to deliver superior cavity protection versus a control toothpaste with fluoride alone. In Colgate Maximum Cavity Protection Plus Sugar Acid Neutraliser toothpaste, therefore, the insoluble calcium compound is calcium carbonate or dicalcium phosphate dehydrate.
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