SSL aims for stronger market growth of products


  • Business
  • Wednesday, 20 Aug 2003

BY HONG BOON HOW IN SHAH ALAM

THE name SSL International Plc may not sound familiar to the general consumer but its products under the Scholl, Durex, Woodward's Gripe Water and ProSport brands are certainly household names. 

SSL Healthcare Malaysia Sdn Bhd managing director Teh Peng Teng said the consumer healthcare and medical products manufacturer was aiming for bigger growth in the local and regional markets. 

"We will always position our products as premium brands as strong brands tend to command a good following from loyal customers who demand quality," he told StarBiz in an interview in Shah Alam. 

Teh Peng Teng showing some of SSL's product lines.

Teh said that besides having strong brands, it was also important to continue building value into its brands through product research and development, and advertising and promotional drives. 

He said the company had expanded its Scholl footwear range to tap into the young consumer market in which it was largely unrepresented. 

Scholl builds on its reputation as "the foot expert" with the introduction of innovative products in providing comfortable footwear. 

Teh said the launch of the Funstep last year had enhanced the Scholl brand and created a new business range for the company. 

The Scholl footwear ranges have been re-engineered over the years and Scholl Gelative shoes, launched in a number of countries including Malaysia, has contributed to the 7% growth in the footwear business achieved last year. 

The company's ProSport elasticated range of sport supports continues to make headway with athletes and active people, while its Woodward’s Gripe Water is the market leader in the category for gripe/colic remedy. 

Teh said the company's Durex condom range continued to be the top brand in the world. 

He said Durex's annual sex survey was devised to gauge attitude towards sexual health and diseases among people in all parts of the world but added that it was not meant to promote promiscuity but to create awareness and discussion on the subject of sex, which was considered taboo in many countries. 

"With the spread of sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies through unsafe sex, we feel that society needs a channel for serious sex issues to be discussed in an interesting way," he said. 

SSL International, which has a presence in 35 countries, is listed in Fortune 500 as one of the world’s largest companies, with a sales turnover of £629mil or RM4bil last year. 

 

 

 

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