Recently, Smithers Apex spoke with advisory board member, Carme Gauxachs, Regulatory Director LatAm for Reckitt Benckiser. She shared her thoughts on the challenges the Latin American market is currently facing, where the big opportunities are and what she is most looking forward to at the conference.
Smithers Apex: How do you think companies can overcome some of the cost challenges but continue to innovate, in Latin America?
Carme Gauxachs: The successful cost effective innovation process relies on the company's ability to identify the cost drivers such as process, manufacturing location, materials etc.. combined with the understanding of key product attributes, efficacy and customers & consumer’s needs. Such elements are extremely important in early stages of the product development process and throughout the product life cycle. Partnership is one of the key enablers to overcome the cost challenges in innovation. Some practices such as running workshops with cross-functional teams and with key Suppliers to generate ideas are more and more being adopted and proved to be a sustainable way to maximize innovation at low cost profiting from a much larger pool of expertiseCompanies need to simplify complex process or products and rebuild in the most cost-efficient way in order to be able to deliver to costumers and consumers innovative and affordable high quality products instead of low cost and low quality products.
Smithers Apex: What are some of the big trends that you think we’ll start to see more of, in Latin America?
Carme Gauxachs: As sector of industries, we are working a lot in the associations in the different countries and together in Latam in Aliada, to see with governments and Health Authorities how to simplify regulatory requirements and trade process, looking for opportunities on regulatory convergence and registration recognition in LATAM in order to be able to be more competitive as a whole, reduce registration timings and unnecessary costs to the market and consumers. Really hope that we can built a more efficient system for both, industry and authorities.
Smithers Apex: How do you see cleaning products evolving within the next few years, in Latin America?
Carme Gauxachs: Cleaning products in Latin America may be evolving from the basic products and formats to formats more convenient, better value for money and sustainable. The products that combine efficiency with other features will be better positioned for success. Consumers life style has been changing over the years, they have a quite busy agenda and are overloaded with many different activities so, there is a high demand for products that clean more quickly with minimum effort, reducing the need of rinsing/washing and drying time, packages that are easy to use, carry and store and deliver a better value for money. In terms of sustainability, it is important to offer alternative solutions that save water, energy and waste, with different package sizes such as refills, concentrates or compacts, as it was already done in other geographical areas, providing to the consumer the same or better product performance, in a more convenient format and with a lower environmental impact for the benefit of all. This will be the way to capture attention and gain consumers' heart.
Smithers Apex: What are you most looking forward to hearing, at Cleaning Products Latin America?
Carme Gauxachs: I´m really looking forward to hearing the debate between Authorities and Industry, talking about what is happening in the different countries of Latin America right now and even more important, what will be the proposals and solutions for the future. I´m also very interested to see the innovations and trends in the different sectors in Latin America
Learn more about Carme's full presentation on day 2 here >>>