In 1916, KC Das along with his two companions BN Maitra and RN Sen laid the foundation of the Calcutta Chemical Company. Then the Swadeshi movement was going on in Bengal and foreign goods were being boycotted.
margo soap story
During the Swadeshi movement in the British Raj, people understood its importance. Meanwhile, during the partition of Bengal in 1905, many indigenous companies were formed. Many of them are still frozen in the market. Like Margo soap. This soap was prepared by the Calcutta Chemical Company. KC Das alias Khagendra Chandra Das was one of the founders of this company.
Born in a Vaidya family. Became a lecturer after studying. Also joined the freedom movement. After the partition of Bengal, there was a lot of anger among the people against the British government. KC Das also got involved in revolutionary activities.
Did not go to Britain, went to America
The father was a judge and he knew that his son could also be arrested. So he decided to send KC Das abroad for higher studies. Father’s choice was Britain, but Das hated the British so much that he did not want to go.
He found a middle ground between his father’s order and his wish and then went to America on a scholarship. He completed his studies there and then when Das and his friend Surendra Mohan Bose were returning to India, they went to Japan with the intention of traveling, where they got an opportunity to understand new technology and business. After this he thought of starting a venture in pharmaceuticals.
Company started in 1916
In 1916, KC Das along with his two companions BN Maitra and RN Sen laid the foundation of the Calcutta Chemical Company. Then the Swadeshi movement was going on in Bengal and foreign goods were being boycotted. His company became very popular due to its toilet products. He prepared Margo soap and neem toothpaste from the extract of neem plant. That year was – 1920, when Margo soap was launched in the market. Due to its low cost, it was well-liked among the people. Within no time, the company became internationally recognized.
desi to foreign, then desi
Das passed away in the 1960s. But by then the company had become one of the most famous business in the South Asian region. For a long time the descendants of KC Das ran this company. It was later acquired by Shaw Wallace. And sold it to Germany’s consumer goods company Henkel.
In 1988, Margo had a market share of 8.9 per cent in the Indian market and was one of the top 5 selling soap brands in India. Margo remained a product of Henkel-SPIC until 2001. By 2003, Margo had a market share of around 2 per cent in the premium-soap segment in the country. In the year 2011, Jyoti Laboratories bought controlling stake in Henkel India and thus once again Margo came into Indian hands. Today Jyoti Labs is manufacturing and selling Margo.