Dettol maker buys Durex condom manufacturer

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

LONDON - The British company which makes the world famous Durex condoms is being sold to an Anglo-Dutch home products world leader which makes the equally famous throat lozenges Strepsils and hygiene product Dettol.

SSL International, the maker of Durex condoms, is set to be sold to Reckitt Benckiser for around 2.54 billion pounds.

Anglo-Dutch group Reckitt will pay 1,163 pence per share for SSL under the agreed takeover deal and will also pay a final dividend due for SSL investors, according to a media release.

Reckitt said the deal would increase sales in its health and personal care arm by about 36 per cent to 2.8 billion pounds.

Both Reckitt and SSL warned that the takeover was likely to lead to job cuts as savings were found. SSL employs about 10,000 people worldwide. It has operations in more than 30 countries and manufactures goods in China, India and Thailand apart from Britain. Reckitt employs almost 25,000 people globally.

Reckitt Benckiser’s other brands include pain killer Nurofen and Gaviscon which treats heartburn and indigestion, Strepsils, Vanish and Dettol.

SSL also makes popular, therapeutic footwear products under the brand name Scholl.

But its product leader continues to be Durex condoms. Durex was registered as a brand name in 1929. The name was chosen to represent Durability, Reliability and Excellence.

With innovations that were to transform the global market in condoms, the company manufactured the world’s first anatomically shaped condom in 1969 and in 1974 produced the first spermicidally lubricated condom.

Filed under: Economy

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