Fabric Care Business

Sales of laundry detergents decreased from the previous year because of the shrinkage in the market for powdered laundry detergents. In the fabric softeners business, sales of softeners with long-lasting fragrances and those with fragrances and deodorizing properties continued to be favorable, but overall sales of this business were below the previous year.

A Review of 2015 and Products that Contributed to Performance

SOFLAN Aroma Rich

In fiscal 2015, Lion continued to invest in the marketing of super-concentrated liquid laundry detergents and fabric softeners with long-lasting fragrances as well as those with fragrances and deodorants, which are on an expansionary trend, and worked to attain growth that exceeded the rate of expansion of the market.

The fabric softener market as a whole continued to expand, rising 4%*1 over the previous year during the fiscal year under review. Within this market, sales of softeners with long-lasting fragrances*2 that are emitted distinctly as long as the apparel is worn are expanding, and showed year-on-year growth of 6%. Since many users of softeners with long-lasting fragrances add softeners each time they wash their clothes and use two or more types of softeners, per capita purchases are rising. As a result, the market for softeners with long-lasting fragrances is forecast to expand.

Responding to user needs, Lion introduced an improved version of SOFLAN Aroma Rich in October 2015 with a selection of new fragrances. Sales of this brand expanded 16%*1 over the previous year, substantially higher than growth in the overall market, thus becoming a market driver.

*1 INTAGE Inc., SRI survey of the fabric softener market. Accumulated sales amount from January through December 2015, compared with the previous year.

*2 Softeners with long-lasting fragrances is according to Lion’s classification, SOFLAN Aroma Rich, etc.

Strategy in Fiscal 2016

In the laundry detergent market, sales have expanded 10%*3 over the past five years, driven by the sales of super-concentrated liquid detergents which have expanded 2.27 times over the same period. Going forward, for the laundry detergent market where growth is expected to continue, in February 2016, Lion launched a new product, TOP SUPER NANOX. Lion has developed Super-Nano-Washing technology, which has greatly increased detergency against sebum, and this technology was adopted for use in TOP SUPER NANOX.

In 2016 also, Lion will continue to invest in the market for super-concentrated liquid detergents and endeavor to exceed the rate of overall market growth and, thereby, expand its market.

*3 INTAGE Inc., SRI survey of the laundry detergent and fabric softeners market, super-concentrated liquid detergents (as defined by Lion). Comparison of accumulated sales amount from January through December in 2010 and in 2015.