Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Thursday, Jan 24, 2002
Parle Agro mulls product expansion
MUMBAI, Jan. 23
THE Rs 300-crore Parle Agro Private Ltd is looking at product expansion in its various business segments to sustain growth in a sluggish market.
Having entered the dairy segment with its Alphonso mango and milk offering, `N-Joi', Parle Agro is planning to introduce two more fruit flavours.
While strawberry is one of them, the company did not divulge the name of the second fruit identified for the dairy product.
In the fruit drink segment where Parle Agro has a hugely popular product `Mango Frooti', it is planning to get into orange and pineapple under the same brand name of Frooti.
Bolstered by N-Joi's success in Mumbai and Chennai, Parle Agro is going in for a national roll-out of the product by the end of March 2002. N-Joi Mango, launched in October 2001, had so far captured 24 per cent market share in milk-based beverages, Ms Alaka Bhosle, Managing Consultant, Parle Agro Private Ltd, said. She added that N-Joi would be the main brand for the company's dairy products. ``We would like to be present in the milk-based beverage as this segment is growing fast,'' Ms Bhosle said.
During 2002, the company has earmarked an advertising budget of Rs 10-12 crores, primarily for N-Joi. The advertising campaign for N-Joi is due to be launched from March 2002.
Frooti Mango, which has 85-per cent market share in tetra packs, grew by a modest four per cent in 2001 against an average growth of 18-20 per cent. This was indicative of the sluggishness in the market.
Nevertheless, the company was planning to introduce two additional fruit drinks orange and pineapple. While orange pulp will be imported from Brazil, pineapple will be sourced from Thailand.
As for its mineral water business, Bailley, Parle Agro has opted for backward integration and gone into the production of preforms and caps. In this segment, the company has gone into packs of various sizes from 20-litre bulk packs to 200-ml pouches and bottles and 150-ml cups.
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