HUL scores seven in India's first POY awards

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Marketing | January 20, 2009
Having made its Indian debut last year with Charulata Ravi Kumar as CEO, POY awards products with the best innovations in the past 18 months

Product & #BANNER1 & # of the Year India, which was launched in February 2008, held its first awards night on January 17, 2009, at the Taj Land's End hotel in Mumbai.

Product of the Year (POY) helps consumers identify innovative products in a highly cluttered environment. POY screens the various products at several levels, including consumer surveys and selection by a jury to decide on the innovative winners in each category. The consumer surveys this year were conducted across 36 centres in India. Face-to-face interviews were conducted as against online surveys to ensure accuracy of results.

Charulata Ravi Kumar, chief executive officer, Product of the Year India, says in an official comment, "The début year of POY in India received overwhelming participation from leading brands across categories."

FMCG and retail products in 26 categories are shortlisted by a jury, which is then judged by the final decision-maker - the consumer. The jury which shortlisted the various entries included eminent personalities such as Uday Shanker, chief executive officer, STAR India; Bharat Kapadia, director, Lokmat; Waheeda Rehman, actor; Bhaskar Das, executive president, The Times of India Group; Alan Collaco, secretary general, ASCI; David Blair, country head, Fitch; and Bhupal Ramnathkar, managing director, Umbrella.

Around 40,000 consumers gave their verdicts on the shortlisted products. There was a single winner in each category. Hindustan Unilever walked away with the most awards - seven in all - in the various categories.

In the Mobile category, Nokia and Samsung picked up two awards each. LG Electronics walked away with two awards each in the Air Conditioners and Premium Lifestyle Refrigerators categories. Henkel India swept an award in the Household Cleaners and Utensil Cleaners categories. Ballarpur Industries grabbed two awards in the Notebooks and Paper categories for BILT Matrix Notebooks and BILT Matrix Paper.

Other winners were Camlin, Godrej Sara Lee, Nivea, Whirlpool, Videocon, Itz Cash, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Kansai Nerolac Paints and Britannia Industries.

Product of the Year is a globally known consumer recognition forum. It is one of the largest independent surveys for product innovation. It has been active for the past 20 years in around 26 countries. In India, various categories such as Mobiles, Electronics and Debit and Credit Cards have been introduced.