Colgate-Palmolive celebrates 100 years in Australia


Palmolive Company Limited, as it was known at the time, was founded 100 years ago in Australia and started on King Street, Sydney with an original investment of £ 129,007.

Over a century, Colgate-Palmolive has introduced more than 400 new products to Australian lives, including oral, body, home and pet care products.

In 1928 Colgate-Palmolive produced its first locally made toothpaste in Australia and now, in 2021, every second Australian household is using a Colgate-Palmolive1 product, with one product being sold in Australia every second2.

The company's innovation has responded to the changing needs of Australians over the past decade. Milestone moments are:

  • In the 1920s, the Colgate Ribbon Dental Cream was introduced in Australia. It went through many versions – from glasses to collapsible tubes.
  • In 1924, the iconic Palmolive green soap was launched in Australia.
  • In 1928 the Colgate Palmolive factory in Balmain, Sydney produced its first toothpaste in Australia.
  • In 1956, the Villawood plant began production of the Ajax Scouring Cleaner, which is now a powerful household cleaning brand.
  • Colgate toothpaste was reformulated with MFP fluoride in the 1960s and was considered by dentists to be the best possible protection against tooth decay.
  • Australia became home to the first update of the famous Palmolive soap in 1973, transitioning from its brick shape to the luxurious pillow shape that has proven so popular that it has remained unchanged for nearly 50 years.
  • In February 2013, the legendary Colgate Optic White brand was launched with its revolutionary 1% hydrogen peroxide formula.
  • The “Bamboo?” Campaign in 2019 helped bring the eco-friendly bamboo toothbrush onto the market.
  • In 2021, the company launched the first recyclable tube of toothpaste of its kind in Australia – made from high-density polyethylene that can be disposed of in roadside plastic recycling bins.

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Colgate-Palmolive continues to give back through its Bright Smiles, Bright Futures programs and community partnerships. For more than 20 years, the program has educated nearly nine million Australian children about the importance of oral health. The success of this program led to the introduction of the complementary “Clean Hands, Good Health” program, which was launched in 2010 to teach children good hand hygiene.

Colgate-Palmolive is also proud to donate $ 6 million to the Smith Family and to re-house 11 million dogs and cats through its partnership with animal shelters.

Simon Petersen, General Manager of Colgate-Palmolive South Pacific, believes that innovation goes beyond product development and that the company's longevity comes from listening to the customer: “We are honored to have been part of life for a century the Australian to play. It is amazing that 50% of Australians have a Colgate Palmolive product at home1.

“In our 100-year history, our customers and our employees are at the center of our success. The importance of health and wellbeing may have evolved, and the use of technology has changed dramatically over that time, but what hasn't changed are our values ​​- to continue building a healthier future for all Australians and their pets, ”added Mr. Petersen added.


1 The household penetration of Palmolive Personal Care products in Australia is 57.9%. Source: IRI, MAT 6/20/21.

2 Based on number of units of Colgate Oral Care products sold in Australia. Source: IRI, MAT 07/04/21.

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