Gillette reckon that there are about one billion men in the world still using traditional double edged (DE) safety razors, with about 400 million of these in India. Obviously Gillette can sell these shavers DE blades from their many factories around the world that are making such blades under many brand names. But Gillette want more, they want to own the customer by tying them into a patent protected walled garden where they can’t use blades from other manufacturers. And of course they want to make more profit per blade sold.
With the above in mind Gillette has introduced a new single bladed cartridge based system razor for the Indian market called the Gillette Guard. So much for all the years and billions of dollars worth of marketing they have thrust down our throats telling us that we need an ever increasing number of blades. With the Guard they have even got rid of the lubrication strips that they have been telling us are so important.
Blades for the Guard cost 5 rupees (11 cents) which is still twice the cost of a DE blade in India (and remember the DE gives you two edges and the Guard only has one) and compares with the Fusion ProGlide blades that Gillette sell us in the West at a cost of $16.99 for four ($4.25 each) which is about 40 times the price that the Indians have to pay for their Guard cartridges. You can see that the products and pricing are based on what they can get away with in each market.
Here is a reminder of what we get: