Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) (BSE: HUL) is India's largest fast moving consumer goods company, touching the lives of two out of three Indians with over 20 distinct categories in home & personal care products and food & beverages. They endow the company with a scale of combined volumes of about 4 million tonnes and sales of over Rs. 13,000 crores. HUL is also one of the country's largest exporters; it has been recognised as a Golden Super Star Trading House by the Government of India. HUL was formed in 1933 as Lever Brothers India Limited and came into being in 1956 as Hindustan Lever Limited through a merger of Lever Brothers, Hindustan Vanaspati Mfg. Co. Ltd. and United Traders Ltd.. It is headquartered in Mumbai, India and has an employee strength of over 15,000 employees and contributes for indirect employment of over 52,000 people. The company was renamed in June 2007 to “Hindustan Unilever Limited”. In 2007, Hindustan Unilever was rated as the most respected company in India for the past 25 years by Businessworld, one of India’s leading business magazines. The rating was based on a compilation of the magazines annual survey of India’s Most Reputed Companies over the past 25 years. HUL is the market leader in Indian consumer products with presence in over 20 consumer categories such as soaps, tea, detergents and shampoos amongst others with over 700 million Indian consumers using its products. It has over 35 brands. Sixteen of HUL’s brands featured in the ACNielsen Brand Equity list of 100 Most Trusted Brands Annual Survey (2008).  According to Brand Equity, HUL has the largest number of brands in the Most Trusted Brands List. It’s a company that has consistently had the largest number of brands in the Top 50 and in the Top 10 (with 4 brands). Hindustan Unilever's distribution covers over 1 million retails outlets across India directly and its products are available in over 6.3 million outlets in India, i.e., nearly 80% of the retail outlets in India. It has 39 factories in the country. Two out of three Indians use the company’s products and HUL products have the largest consumer reach being available in over 80 per cent of consumer homes across India. The Anglo-Dutch company Unilever owns a majority stake (52%) in Hindustan Unilever Limited. HUL was one of the eight Indian companies to be featured on the Forbes list of World’s Most Reputed companies in 2007 History - Chronology
In the summer of 1888, visitors to the Kolkata harbour noticed crates full of Sunlight soap bars, embossed with the words "Made in England by Lever Brothers". With it, began an era of marketing branded Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG). Soon after followed Lifebuoy soap in 1895 and other famous brands like Pears, Lux and Vim. Vanaspati ghee was launched in 1918 and the famous Dalda brand came to the market in 1937. In 1931, Unilever set up its first Indian subsidiary, Hindustan Vanaspati Manufacturing Company, followed by Lever Brothers India Limited (1933) and United Traders Limited (1935). These three companies merged to form HUL in November 1956; HUL offered 10% of its equity to the Indian public, being the first among the foreign subsidiaries to do so. Unilever now holds 52.10% equity in the company. The rest of the shareholding is distributed among about 360,675 individual shareholders and financial institutions. The erstwhile Brooke Bond's presence in India dates back to 1900. By 1903, the company had launched Red Label tea in the country. In 1912, Brooke Bond & Co. India Limited was formed. Brooke Bond joined the Unilever fold in 1984 through an international acquisition. The erstwhile Lipton's links with India were forged in 1898. Unilever acquired Lipton in 1972, and in 1977 Lipton Tea (India) Limited was incorporated. Pond's (India) Limited had been present in India since 1947. It joined the Unilever fold through an international acquisition of Chesebrough Pond's USA in 1986. Since the very...
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