Tambrands—Overcoming Cultural Resistance

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CASE 41 Tambrands—Overcoming Cultural
Tampax, Tambrands’s only product, is the best-selling tampon in the world, with 44 percent of the global market. North America and Europe account for 90 percent of those sales. Company earnings dropped 12 percent to $82.8 million on revenues of $662 million. Stakes are high for Tambrands because tampons are basically all it sells, and in the United States, which currently generates 45 percent of Tanbrands’s sales, the company is mired in competition with such rivals as Playtex Products and Kimberly-Clark. What’s more, new users are hard to get because 70 percent of women already use tampons. In the overseas market, Tambrands officials talk glowingly of a huge opportunity. Only 100 million of
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Procter & Gamble plans to sell Tampax as a complement to its existing feminine-hygiene products, particularly in Asia and Latin America. Known for its innovation in such mundane daily goods as disposable diapers and detergent, P&G has grown in recent years by acquiring products and marketing them internationally. “Becoming part of P&G—a world-class company with global marketing and distribution capabilities—will accelerate the global growth of Tampax and enable the brand to achieve its full potential. This will allow us to take the expertise we’ve gained in the feminine protection business and apply it to a new market with Tampax.” Market analysts applauded the deal. “P&G has the worldwide distribution that Tampax so desperately needs,” said a stock market analyst. “Tambrands didn’t have the infrastructure to tap into growth in the developing countries and P&G does.”

“The greatest challenge in the global expansion of tampons is to address the religious and cultural mores that suggest that insertion is fundamentally prohibited by culture,” says the managing director of a consulting company. “The third market [Cluster 3] looks like the great frontier of tampons, but it could be the seductive noose of the global expansion objective.” The company’s new global campaign for Tambrands is a big shift from most feminine protection

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