Hindustan Unilever Ltd () said on Monday that it will address the ongoing conflict with distributors over pricing parity between traditional distributors and organised business-to-business (B2B) platforms “bilaterally”.
The statement came after the country’s largest packaged consumer goods maker held a meeting with the distributors in the evening.
“HUL will make all the efforts to address any specific issue bilaterally with its distributors to mutual satisfaction,” an HUL spokesperson said in response to an ET query.
Distributors, led by the All India Consumer Products Distributors Federation (AICPDF), which represents about 400,000 distributors, have been seeking equal margins from FMCG companies as offered to new business-to-business (B2B) and emerging wholesaler and retailer platforms.
“In response to the request we had received from AICPDF, company representatives met them to understand their concerns and feedback about the evolving route to market models,” said the HUL spokesperson.
Distributors have conveyed that they will keep supplies to consumers uninterrupted, said the spokesperson. “HUL has a long-standing relationship with its distributors. Our distributors have overwhelmingly conveyed to us that they would continue to meet the needs of our shoppers and consumers in an uninterrupted manner,” he said.
Last week, a section of HUL distributors threatened to stop supplying some of the company’s products in phases from January 1, alleging that HUL had not initiated any discussion on the issue of price parity with them.
The HUL spokesperson said general trade continues to be its largest channel. “HUL remains fully committed to ensuring that our distribution partners earn a fair return on their investments and work collaboratively,” he said.