Claire Molyneux has come a long way since receiving a Masters of Arts in Modern History and German from England’s Oxford University. In fact, the journey recently took her to the Palms Shopping Mall in Lekki, a developing suburb of Lagos, Nigeria. There she talked to the Nigerian people about the re-launch of a new Procter & Gamble detergent, Ariel Prozim, designed to meet the specific needs of African consumers. The brand unveiling attracted press, government officials, as well as consumers, and Claire’s words were reported in several National newspapers:
"Ariel is creating value for Nigerian consumers by offering the right products to meet consumers’ needs and budget. With the new Ariel Prozim, you only need to wash your clothes once. This means that you use half the quantity of Ariel that you would use with another detergent. Nigerian consumers can be certain they are making smart choices when every naira counts."
More companies are recognizing the potential of the African Continent, particularly at a time when last year’s South Africa World Cup underscored how the entire region’s pride has the potential move business forward—despite some extraordinary obstacles. Increasingly, multinational marketers see the continent as a number of sub-regions. West Africa, one of those sub-regions with 180 million people, is generally best served through a hub in Lagos, Nigeria’s capital.
Claire Molyneux has been based in Nigeria now for two and a half years and is responsible for Procter & Gamble’s Fabric Care Division, as well as for Gillette, Duracell, New Business and Market Research, where she is committed to touching and improving more consumers lives across West Africa via P&G brands and it’s Social Responsibility Platform ‘Live, Learn and Thrive’.
A Marketing role in Africa, she has discovered, certainly means being a “brand ambassador,” but often with the official accouterments of true diplomacy and as a devoted champion of local economic growth. As she points out, “This product comes from our state-of-the-art production plant in Ibadan; the only P&G Detergent factory in the whole of our Sub-Saharan Africa region.” In fact, at the Ariel re-launch, the Deputy Governor of Lagos State looked on so that she could ascertain that Ariel Prozim was indeed an improvement over its predecessor, Ariel Enzymax, now removing even tough stains in just 1 wash. The Deputy Governor’s reaction to the clothes-cleaning demonstration would insure the general public of product efficacy.
Claire’s speeches at such unveiling ceremonies often pay tribute to local organizations, while underscoring P&G’s respect for the local consumer. And the message that best resonates with the Nigerian people is quite a sophisticated one. Claire is quoted here by The Nation, Lagos’ newspaper:
“We must mention the immense support of NAFDAC, an agency that is known globally for its effort to ensure that only the best quality products are available for Nigerian consumers. Without their support, P&G could not have brought this product and its associate job opportunities to Nigerians. Since 1837, Procter & Gamble has built a heritage of touching consumers’ lives across the globe with brands that make everyday life a little better; now and for generations to come and we remain committed to improving the lives of the world’s consumers.”