Reckitt and Colman was able to assemble this disparate collection of brand characters to grace the covers of its Annual Report in the 1980s. Many of these mascots, so artfully combined, have wandered off in all directions while the parent company merged with a Dutch business becoming Reckitt Benckiser in 1999. Since then the name has been abbreviated to the not very inspirational RB. While Harpic, Dettol, Brasso and French’s Mustard remain part of RB, others have moved on to new ownership (listed below) and a few (Robin Starch, Wren’s Shoe Polish, Drummer Dyes, Bluebell Polish) seem to have vanished leaving very little trace. Even where the products survive many brand characters have been retired and although some are no great loss, the world seems a poorer place without the jaunty monocled Meltonian Man bringing the sparkle of the Drones’ Club to an otherwise unexciting range of shoe care products.
Colman’s Mustard – now Unilever
Robinson’s Drinks – now Britvic
Reeves – ColArt (majority owned by Linden Group, Sweden)
Winsor & Newton - ColArt (majority owned by Linden Group, Sweden) Cherry Blossom – Granger’s
Propert’s – Kiwi (S C Johnson, formerly Johnson Wax)
Meltonian - Kiwi (S C Johnson, formerly Johnson Wax)