Hindustan Lever (HLL), the Indian subsidiary of Anglo-Dutch conglomerate Unilever, appears to be experiencing distribution problems following its joint selling agreement with International Bestfoods (IBL). Retailers are complaining that ordered IBL lines have not been delivered for two months, reports local daily the Economic Times.

The brands involved include the Captain Cook brand, Knorr soups, Brown & Polson, Rex Jelly and the Tarla Dalal range of mixes in India.

The reported teething problems follow the merger of the sales forces at HLL and IBL, which sees the 220-strong IBL sales team become employees of HLL. The marketing and business arms of the companies have not been integrated, although discussions are continuing.

Meanwhile, the media has been speculating that a number of competing brands will be phased out to prevent sales cannibalisation by similar brands now in the joint stable, but the company has made no official comment.