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Britvic enters India with local take on existing kids’ line

By RJ Whitehead , 12-Aug-2014

British-based Britvic, one of Europe’s biggest soft drinks companies, has launched a first charge on the Indian market with its global kids' brand, Robinsons Fruit Shoot. 

The initial range will include four flavours that have been developed specifically for the Indian market, including local favourite Mango.

At the drink’s launch, Britvic executives revealed the company intends to be present in 25,000 stores around India in the next three months, after initially launching in 10 cities across the country.

The British soft drinks major, which is also behind Tango, as well as PepsiCo brands Pepsi and 7UP in Britain and Ireland, is also looking at launching in several other Asian markets within the next 12 months.

Big business

India’s soft drinks market has been heating up this year, with Coca-Cola ramping up its investment in the country last month to the tune of US$5bn—an increase of $2bn over initial plans revealed last year. However, the consumption of non-traditional drinks is still significantly lower in India than it is in other Brics countries.

"Robinsons Fruit Shoot is one of the most successful innovations for Britvic and a brand that drives our international ambitions," said Simon Stewart, Britvic International’s managing director. 

We're certain India is the right market to continue growing our international footprint."

In 2000, Britvic launched the Fruit Shoot line in Britain, and it quickly became the number-one selling kids' soft drink brand there. It has since grown into a leading global brand with substantial market share in nine European countries, as well as the US, Australia and the Middle East.

"Robinsons Fruit Shoot is the right brand, and now is the right time to enter the India market to address the gap in the growing kids' juice drinks category," said Britvic’s Asia head, Marius De Beer. 

"The brand positioning and unique flavours for India demonstrate our research and development team's commitment to understand Indian consumer insights and customise our global products to appeal to local palates.”

Local tastes

The four flavours for the Indian market include ­Apple-Blueberry, Strawberry-Raspberry, Apple-Pear and Mango, each available in 300ml bottles with a maximum retail price of Rs30 (US$0.49) per bottle. The lines will compete with existing local brand Real

The brand’s launch campaign will focus on encouraging consumer trials through in-store activations at leading outlets. 

“These will engage consumers and generate interest in the kids' soft drinks category, with product sampling and giveaways and more,” said Manish Gupta, Britvi

"We look forward to introducing Robinson Fruit Shoot as the first brand in our journey and continuing to develop products for Indian consumers for many years to come," said Manish Gupta, who heads up Britvic’s India operation.

Britvic has partnered with local distributor Narang Group, and the launch will be executed in a phased approach starting with Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. It marks the first step in Britvic's plans to invest in growing an Indian team to develop the brand in the region.