Thursday, September 21, 2023
Web Desk

Contraceptive giants eye India as population explosion, cultural shifts birth new market

Contraceptive market is expected to more than double in size, reaching $1.7 billion by 2030

Web Desk
A production line at a condom factory. -Reuters/file
A production line at a condom factory. -Reuters/file  

Global contraceptive manufacturers have set their eyes on India, a country with historically low contraceptive usage rates, with hopes of capitalising on the nation's massive, young, tech-savvy and ever-increasing population.

India's recent demographic shift, combined with modern marketing strategies, makes it an attractive growth market for contraceptive producers. 

The market is expected to more than double in size, reaching $1.7 billion by 2030, according to GrandView Research.

"The Indian market is very attractive. The contraceptive usage rate there is still low," said Kazuhiro Kamio, chief of overseas sales and marketing at Japanese contraceptive maker Okamoto Industries. "If non-users can be educated on how to use them, given the population size, the volume would be tremendous."

Currently, only around 5% of sexually active men in India use contraceptives as a regular form of contraception, and some remain unfamiliar with condoms altogether, as indicated by a 2020 government survey.

 In contrast, 19% of sexually active men in the United States use contraceptives consistently.

India's demographic profile is particularly attractive to contraceptive makers, as the country is set to become the world's most populous nation, surpassing China. 

With nearly one billion people aged 15-64 years, India offers a significant market for contraceptive products.

International contraceptive manufacturers are looking to tap into this potential. 

Malaysia's Karex, the world's largest contraceptive maker, plans to partner with local brands for expansion. 

Japanese manufacturer Okamoto aims to build brand awareness and increase the in-store availability of its products.

Britain's Reckitt Benckiser has launched new products under its Durex brand and expanded its rural marketing campaign. 

Church and Dwight, the owner of the US brand Trojan, is also planning to enter the Indian market.

Mankind Pharma, India's market leader with a 33% share, has been investing in its online presence and local-language advertising to reach both urban and rural consumers. 

The company conducted a successful $520 million IPO in May, signalling strong investor interest in the market.

Social media has played a significant role in reshaping contraceptive marketing strategies, allowing manufacturers to target specific audiences and work around advertising restrictions.

 Sales of premium contraceptives have seen annual growth of 21% over the past five years.

Additionally, changing cultural norms, including a growing number of Indians delaying marriage or choosing not to marry at all, have contributed to the increase in premarital sexual activity among individuals in their late 20s.

In summary, India's evolving demographics, rising disposable income, and changing attitudes towards sex are positioning it as a key growth market for global contraceptive manufacturers, who are leveraging modern marketing approaches to reach a broader and more receptive audience.