Gerald Wright, director for central and eastern Europe at Lintas Worldwide, counts approximately 12 detergent launches in Poland by Western companies over the past year or so. Though not quite as aggressive in Hungary and Czech, he sees the same Western levels there, too. 'Western companies are fighting a competitive battle (in these markets),' Wright explained. 'They've reorganized opportunities at different price points in the packaged-detergent area and are fighting it out on all fronts. The way you win this war is not to let the enemy get a bit of territory, different price points in this case, entirely to himself.'
As Wright sees it, another factor in the drive by Western marketers to establish a range of brands in the East is to try and reduce the possibility of consumer backlash against this huge flood of Western products. 'Our research has picked up that some Eastern consumers feel that many Western products are still just too expensive and consequently out of reach,' he says. 'This may partly explain why marketers have responded by looking for a range of pricing opportunities, to address those portions of society who resent what has happened in their countries: the charge of Western companies.'
Daniel Tilles writes about advertising from Paris.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)