Known until the early 1990s as Philippine Refining Company (PRC), Unilever Philippines started as an oil milling business which at its peak produced nearly 100,000 tons of coconut oil annually. Today, the company is a leading manufacturer of home and personal care products, foods, and ice cream. With average annual sales of Php 40billion, its roster of brands include Axe, Best Foods, Block and White, Clear, CloseUp, Comfort, Cream Silk, Domex, Dove, Eskinol, Master, Pond’s, Knorr, Lady’s Choice, Lipton, Rexona, Selecta, Sunsilk, Surf, and Vaseline
Recognised annually amongst the Top 20 Tax Payers in the country, Unilever Philippines employs over 1,000 people direcly, as well as provides jobs for 10,000 indirectly (i.e. distributors and supplier), as a result of its business presence in the country. Employees and business partners recognise that energy, creativity, the resilience to face changes and make things better are all needed for business and people to grow together. This is exemplified by the current state in Unilever’s Pace (Manila) head office, where there are hole-in-the-wall plants for packaging suppliers and third-party manufacturers. Unilever is known to be one of the few companies in the industry that has succeeded in keeping majority of its manufacturing base in the Philippines. Its Personal Care unit made news by securing the right to manufacture deodorant mini-sticks for local and export markets. It has succeeded in entering the US market and achieved the milestone on producing its 100 millionth stick in 2004.
The company has been leader in introducing new technologies into the country since the early days of its existence – margarine production in the 1930s’ non-soap detergents, shampoos and toothpaste in the 1960s and 1970s and state of the art sulphonation technology and cogeneration power plant in the 1980s. The nineties has seen the company focusing on several improvements in the Environment front one of which was the introduction of the first 100% biodegradable detergent bar in the Philippines. Unilever works closely with the community and other NGOs to protect and improve the environment.