Daio resolutely pursues the key strategies of its growth plan, with a focus on further expanding its Home & Personal Care (H&PC) business globally and strengthening the profitability of the H&PC business, in accordance with its Third Medium-term Business Plan “Move on: Reform and Soar Above” and its long-term vision announced in May 2018.
While considering the next expansion area following Asia, Daio started to focus on Turkey, which has unique geopolitical characteristics, and has conducted market research since 2014. As Turkey is expected to have a solid growth in its domestic hygiene market with a population of 82 million and more than 1 million births per year and has a potential to become a production base for possible export to MENA (Middle East and North Africa) and Russia and its neighboring countries, Daio established a representative office in Istanbul in 2017 from which it has been selling baby diapers since March 2018. As a result, its GOO.N brand has already gained a certain degree of recognition locally. Furthermore, Daio opened a representative office in Moscow in July 2019 to strengthen its marketing activities in Russia, and Daio has also been conducting sales activities in countries in the Middle East.
Özen, established in 1998, has a factory situated in an excellent location close to Istanbul and currently produces and sells products in three product categories, including baby diapers, wet wipes and toiletries, which is expected to have synergistic effects with Daio’s H&PC business. Since Özen, which entered the baby diaper business in 2007, had Essity, a major global manufacturer of hygiene products, as its equity participant from 2011 to 2019, Daio assesses that Özen’s technical capabilities in manufacturing baby diapers is high.
Meanwhile, Daio’s Board of Directors has resolved to make Santher an indirectly owned subsidiary of Daio. A joint investment company established in Brazil called H&PC BRAZIL PARTICIPAÇÕES S.A” (Subsidiary Company) , in which Daio and Marubeni hold 51% and 49% stake respectively, will directly acquire 100% of Santher shares.
The above strategic measures are based on the long-term vision of Daio, and Daio considers M&A to be an effective option to achieve its targeted plans. Likewise, Daio considers the transaction as an attractive opportunity to enter the Brazilian market where demand for consumer goods, including personal care, is expected to significantly increase. Daio’s vision post-transaction is to extend the business to the entire South American region and furthermore to Southern Africa by capturing customer demands for high value-added products driven by economic growth in the region, and it is looking to optimize its business portfolio to achieve sustainable growth lasting more than 10 years into the future.
Marubeni considers the overseas expansion of H&PC products (household paper, disposable diapers, sanitary napkins, etc.) as a new opportunity for growth and envisions to provide high-quality products worldwide, while contributing to a hygienic environment and a safe and comfortable lifestyle. This acquisition will mark the first milestone for such concept. Furthermore, Marubeni aims to establish a platform to provide products and services that answer to the diversified consumer needs by building points of contact with end-consumers through the sales of H&PC products and integrating those with its existing functions, resources and networks as a general trading house. In particular, it targets to fill the growing demand of middle-class consumers in emerging countries.
Daio and Marubeni have decided to jointly enter the Brazilian market as they determined the market as attractive, in light of the significant population growth and economic development of the country, and anticipated notable demand growth for consumer goods (including personal care products). The Brazilian H&PC market is the fourth largest market in the world, with household paper products and disposable diapers marking an annual growth rate of 5.6% and 5.4% respectively over the last five years, and continued growth of the market is expected moving forward, given that penetration rates of such products would increase driven by population growth, economic development and higher living standards. Since it should take significant number of years to gain market share and to generate profit organically through a greenfield investment, Daio and Marubeni believe a friendly takeover of a promising local company will be an effective measure, therefore they came to the decision to acquire Santher.
Santher was founded in 1938 and has engaged in the sales and manufacturing of personal care products such as household paper, disposable baby diapers and sanitary napkins in Brazil for over 80 years. Brand awareness of the company’s products is notably high throughout Brazil. Particularly, it has established a solid leading position in the H&PC market with the “Personal” brand, which is highly valued by local consumers. Santher holds a strong position as a market leader in the Brazilian household paper market, and out of the local companies, holds the top share of disposable diapers and sanitary napkins.
Daio and Marubeni believe Santher has extensive potential for further profitability through streamlining of its production structure and a shift to higher value creation. Marubeni and Daio intend to accelerate the reorganization of the existing production structure after the transaction and implement the following measures to stimulate further growth of Santher: entry into the manufacture and sales of adult disposable diapers where Daio holds an advantage; extension of its premium product lineup; enhancement of fast-growing B2B products for hospitals and clinics; introduction of new technologies to improve moisture retention and solubility of products. Also, by utilizing Marubeni’s extensive operational expertise within Brazil and its global network, Daio and Marubeni seek to enhance Santher’s corporate value and envision to eventually reach out to the entire South American market and furthermore to the African market in the future.