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UNILEVER ± AN INTRODUCTION
If one travels around the world, he will find homes across all continents where people useUnilever products. In fact, in many countries it would be hard to find homes without Unilever products. Unilever is one of the largest, most international companies in the world. It is'international', not 'global' because it does not attempt to enter all markets with the same products. Products fall into two main categories, "Foods and Home" and Personal Care", each of which is vast. Unilever sells over a thousand brands, many of which are market leaders - in acountry, in a region or in the world.The story of how the company came into being is an interesting one. Lever Brothers wasfounded in 1885 when W.H. Lever, later Lord Leverhulme, launched 'Sunlight' Soap. By the endof the century he had built up one of the largest soap businesses in the world. On September 2,1929, this company decided to merge with a Dutch Company, Margarine Unie and on January 1,1930 'Unilever' came into existence. Both were international companies, active in some 40countries, had a common customer ± the housewife, and were using similar raw materials. After the merger of these two giants, a form of organization was required that would give due weightto both the British and the Dutch partners, and two companies with identical boards were set up.The Unilever group is therefore made up of two parent companies having two headquarters - onein Rotterdam, known as Unilever N.V. and the other in London known as Unilever PLC. Theapex of the two companies comprises of an Executive Committee, headed by the Chairmen of Unilever PLC and Unilever N.V.Unilever Pakistan Limited needs no introduction. In the world of consumer products it hascreated an indelible name for itself with brands such as Lifebuoy, Lux and Surf. By far thelargest consumer products company in Pakistan, UPL is a part of the consumer products giantUnilever. UPL was established some fifty years ago in the then newly created Pakistan. Thetown of Rahim Yar Khan was the site chosen for setting up avegetable oil factory in 1958 and that is where the first UPL manufacturing facility developed.