Unilever Finally Knows Where It's Going: East

Leaner and bursting with cash, the consumer-products giant targets emerging markets

The Billa supermarket in a drab residential neighborhood in Prague is hardly bustling on this weekday afternoon. But that doesn't faze Unilever's local chief, Nick Stenning, and its national sales manager, Richard Krejci, as they check out the store's well-stocked shelves. Krejci zeroes in on a competitor's poorly displayed toothpaste. It won't get much bang for the crown, he comments. Then, Stenning heaps scorn on a bar of Magnat ice cream--a local entrepreneur's knock-off of Unilever's 75 cents Magnum. "We'll have to have a word with him," he says.

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