|Description||Pond's (India) has been part of Unilever since 1987, and part of Hindustan Lever since 1998.|
Pond's was launched in India in 1947 as a cream, soap, and talcum powder. In 1964 the brand's Dreamflower Talc made US $1 million. Pond's (India) Private Ltd was incorporated in 1977 and the name changed a year later to Pond's (India) Limited. This latter company came under the Unilever fold when the American business Chesebrough-Pond's was acquired in 1987. Pond's (India) Ltd's subsidiary, Pond's Exports Limited, was incorporated in 1981 as a private company and, as of 2010, is still a subsidiary of Hindustan Unilever.
Exporting goods to other countries was a significant part of the company's business. Together with HLL, Pond's ran factories which made leather shoes for export to Germany and the UK. The company also made thermometers, taking over a business that Chesebrough-Pond's had previously run in New York; a factory was established at Kodaikanal in Southern India in 1983 and all of its products were exported, mostly to the US. Pond's also began to cultivate mushrooms in 1985 on behalf of the US company Giorgio Foods and a factory at Ooty was established. The way in which the mushrooms were grown was adapted by the Indian company - whereas peat moss was used in the US as casting material, Pond's developed a new material based on coconut due to the scarcity of peat moss.
In 1993, Quest International India Ltd was amalgamated with Pond's.
In 1998 Pond's (India) Ltd merged with Hindustan Lever; at the time Unilever had 51% equity in both companies. The two companies had already shared common distribution of its personal products since 1992, as well as a common technology base and pool of management (the Chairman of HLL was also the Chairman of Pond's, since at least 1991).
Sources: items from this sub-collection (including Annual reports 1992, 1993, 1995, 1997); Hamara Magazine, March 1998; Unilever Magazine, No. 76, Second Issue 1990, pp. 30-34 (for information about Pond's exported material).