Caspian Energy Journal Caspian European Club
Tuesday, 11 December 2018 15:40

Our brands do improve lives of people in a meaningful way – General Manager of P&G Featured

Caspian Energy (CE): Procter & Gamble has been operating in the market of Azerbaijan since 1998. How would you assess the potential of the market of Azerbaijan?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu, General Manager, Procter & Gamble Caucasus: Indeed, 2018 has been a very special year for us, because we are celebrating 20 years of P&G operations in Azerbaijan.  P&G was one of the first big FMCG companies to enter Azerbaijani market. In this long journey, we have brought the firsts to the local market in many categories and continue to bring value-creating innovation. For the past 20 years, we’ve tried to create small but meaningful differences in our consumers’ lives. Azerbaijani market, in comparison to European, is still emerging and has huge growth potential. And one of the biggest potentials we currently see is e-commerce development.

CE: Which brand of the company is considered the most popular in Azerbaijan?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu: Gillette with Bahram’s memes (laughs). Seriously, we have 15 brands in Azerbaijan currently, and I cannot name any favorite. When we conduct studies, consumers usually have more than 1 brand of P&G at their homes, and they cannot imagine being left out without many of our brands, such as Ariel, Pampers, Always, Fairy, Gillette, Head & Shoulders, Pantene, Oral-B. I believe this is the true indicator of the fact, mentioned above – our brands do improve lives of people in a meaningful way.

CE: AFFA and Procter & Gamble have recenetly signed a partnerhsip agreement. What does this agreement provide?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu: Over the past 20 years, P&G has made a great contribution to Azerbaijan's economic life. However, we have not limited our contribution to only economy, but also focused on improving lives of our people through corporate responsibility and community impact projects, as well as meaningful partnerships. Supporting sports is an important part of our community impact vision where we focus our efforts on health and hygiene programs where we can make the biggest impact. For us, a healthy society is associated with a large number of children and youth growing up with sport. We brought to life this idea by supporting Azeri national team at the 2012 London Olympic Games, being an official partner of the First European Games in 2015, and by supporting the Azerbaijan National Olympic team in the 2017 Islamic Solidarity Games. Our goal in partnership with the Association of Football Federations of Azerbaijan is to encourage sports among young people. The partnership contract covers the UEFA Nations League and European Championship qualifying games until December 2019.

CE: Advertising clips, involving our football players, will be shot for a number of brands of the company within the framework of partnership with AFFA. When shall we see these clips and who will be starring in those clips?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu: Within the partnership with AFFA, we will produce and launch TV commercials for our Gillette and Head & Shoulders brands with the participation of our football players. In addition to supporting the national team, these commercials will promote football even more widely. Gillette TV commercial is already on air as of October, starring Ruslan Gurbanov – you might have seen it already. As to Head & Shoulders commercial, let me keep you excited a bit – you might see it early next year.

CE: Raising a healthy generation has been one of the mottos of Procter & Gamble. Until now, the company has sponsored many sports events and sportsmen in Azerbaijan. Which new initiatives are expected in this direction?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu: We are also keen on continuing sports support in Azerbaijan and plan several projects for this in the nearest future. And of course, we are not stopping our CSR project and will keep contributing to the society. We’ve been serving the women and men of Azerbaijan with globally leading brands and regionally relevant projects for 20 years and will keep doing so.

CE: Which successful projects of Procter & Gamble implemented in Azerbaijan could you note?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu: For the past 2 decades, we’ve impacted Azerbaijan’s society in many ways with our various projects. We are working to touch and improve the lives of more consumers today and for the generations to come.

Since our early years, as of 1999, P&G implements a “Knowledgeable mother, healthy baby” hospital program under Pampers brand. The aim of the program is to educate new moms on important care guidelines for the newborns, distribute product samples to them and provide moms with a pediatrician support through a hotline. We have reached and educated over 871,000 moms since the launch of the program.

Another educational program we have in place since 1999 is Puberty education with Always project for teen girls. The project is supported by Public Health and Reforms Center of the Ministry of Health and the Reliable Future Youth Organization. The aim of the program is to educate 6th and 7th grade girls at schools about the important changes their physique and mentality is undergoing and provide them with a professional support through the dedicated hotline. Since the start, we have improved lives of over half a million girls in our country.

We supported Azerbaijan national team in London Olympics in 2012, followed by a nation-wide road trip to spread sport spirit in all regions of the country. In May 2014 P&G signed a sponsorship agreement with BEGOC and became the first sponsor of the 1st European Games held in Azerbaijan. As of April 2015, we launched the biggest ever campaign for P&G in Azerbaijan promoting sports spirit alongside with appreciation of our moms’ role in who we grow up to become – “For my mom!”. In 2016, we supported Azerbaijan National team in Baku Islamic Solidarity Games, sharing the pride and happiness of the 1st place.

In 2018, we launched another large-scale CSR project to support more than 200 kids living in SOS Children’s Villages, contributing not only financially, but also increasing the awareness of the charity organization amongst population.

CE: Which countries are producing products sold by Procter & Gamble in Azerbaijan? Is there an issue of producing goods in Azerbaijan?

Deger Kurtaslanoglu: P&G supply chain is designed to deliver excellent value and service to our retail partners and consumers and to enable fast innovation qualification and expansion. Already established manufacturing facilities are well set to provide best value to the Azeri consumers. We present best value to our consumers in Azerbaijan with our products produced within the highest quality standards all over the world. The products shipped to Azerbaijan are produced in many different countries such as the USA, France, Germany, UK, Ireland, Italy, Russia, Belgium, Hungary, Turkey.

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