Marketing review news
17 January 2004

Parry's Confectionery offers 60 percent stake to Korea's Lotte
Lotte Confectioneries of Korea has acquired a 60.39 percent stake in the Muruguppa Group owned Parry's Confectionery Ltd for Rs 64.48 crore.

According to Parry's Confectionery, the entry of multinationals in the Indian confectionery market over the last decade, adversely affected it and it could not support further investments. Parry's feels that Lotte has deep pockets for advertising and promotions and the decision to divest the group's stake in PCL is in the best interest of its shareholders.

Lotte will pay Rs 5 lakh per annum to EID Parry as royalty for using the Parry brand of PCL owned by EID Parry.

Nissan to launch SUV X-Trail in India
Japanese auto major Nissan Motor Company has announced that it will launch its sports utility vehicle (SUV) 'X-Trail' by of this year in India. Based on the response the product receives here the company will expand its business plans in the coming years.

The SUV will be imported in the completely built unit form and is expected to cost around Rs 20 lakh. The X-Trail will be available in two variants - Elegance and Comfort, and will be fitted with diesel power and manual transmissions.

The product was launched in Japan in November 2000.

Nissan will set up four dealerships in Chennai, New Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai for sales and service businesses.

500 private petro retail outlets coming up soon
500 private outlets are likely to be set up by private sector petroleum companies in the next four months according to the petroleum Minister, Mr Ram Naik.

He said that the Ministry had recently undertaken a review of the licences issued to the private sector for setting up retail outlets and so far 11,159 retail outlets have been sanctioned with Reliance Industries Ltd proposing to set up 5,489 outlets, Essar Oil 1,700, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation 1,100, Numaligarh Refineries Ltd (NRL) 510 and Shell 2000.

At present, there are around 20,000 retail outlets set up entirely by the public sector.

Ashok Leyland to increase market share
Commercial vehicle major Ashok Leyland is looking at increasing its market share by about 15 percent in the next 3-5 years on the back of a number of product launches. At present the company the company has a market share of about 35 percent in the commercial vehicles segment.

The company says the growth will come higher sales of medium and heavy commercial vehicles (M&HCV) for intra-city transport and small trucks, especially after the development of highways across the country.

The company has recently launched a high-capacity low-floor vestibule CNG bus and a CNG-powered minibus as well as a new-generation 260-horse power engine fitted tractor-trailer and a tipper (to be launched in 2005) to be showcased at the Auto Expo, which opens on January 15. The new heavy vehicles codenamed `Newgen' would be powered by the 260-horse power `J' engine, being sourced from the Japan-based Hino Motors.

Barista Coffee's ambitious plans
Barista Coffee Company Ltd has ambitious plans for the future. The chain targets to be the number two coffee retail chain worldwide over the next decade. Barista at present has some 130 outlets and plans to add another 50 in the current year.

The chain plans to be the second biggest coffee outlet worldwide in terms of brand imagery, brand dominance, consumer franchise and turnover and has charted out aggressive plans to achieve that though it will not revealed the investment earmarked to achieve in growing its operations.

In the next few years Barista's growth will primarily come from Asia, especially India and neighbouring countries and would tap non-Asian markets after a few years. The international sales account for 10 per cent of Barista's business at present.

At present, Starbucks dominates the coffee retail chain segment and has about 6,000 outlets worldwide. The number two slot is wide open and there are many players with less than 1,000 outlets. Barista considers itself to be among the top 15 players at present.

HLL announces festival offer for coffee brands
Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) has launched a "Festival of Happiness" offer as a part of its promotional campaign for its Bru and Deluxe Green Label coffee brands.

This is a scratch-card based offer. Purchase of Bru or Deluxe Green Label coffee entitles the consumer to scratch and win from a scratchboard that will be present in the shop. This will reveal the prize won by the consumer.

Starting from January 15, the offer comprises prizes including gift hampers and passes to high profile concerts.

The offer will run for a month before culminating into a mega concert to be held in Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Kochi, Bangalore, Coimbatore, Madurai and Chennai.

The eight concerts, which can be attended by 7,000 people, feature leading performers, including Devi Sri Prasad. Select winners will get the opportunity to "loot" the store where they have won - to pick up as many products as they can in a 30-second period.

Gift hampers of HLL products form the first level prize category. The second level prizes are an opportunity to participate in fun loots. The grand prizes are passes to the concerts.

Kinetic to offer seven Italjet models
Kinetic Motor Company has acquired the exclusive manufacturing and distribution rights for seven models of scooters, in the 75-250 cc range, from Italian two-wheeler maker Italjet.

As part of the deal Italjet will stop the manufacture of the seven models, and Kinetic will henceforth be the sole manufacturer and distributor of these, in the domestic and international markets.

Italjet's design team will also design new models for Kinetic, and Kinetic will acquire five-year exclusive manufacturing and distributing rights for these.

With the addition of the new scooters, Kinetic is hoping to sell 2 00,000 scooters in the next financial year and has set a target of 120,000 scooter sales for the current financial year.

As a part of the product portfolio acquisition, Kinetic will get a ready distributorship network in Europe and the US, courtesy Italjet which has already established a presence in those markets. The scooters will be fitted with Kinetic engines as Italjet does not have its own engine technology and has been sourcing it from different companies such as Piaggio.

Maybach arrives with price tag of Rs 5-cr
The Maybach has arrived in India priced at a rather astronomical sum of Rs 5 crore.

Arguably the most luxurious car in the world from Daimler Chrysler it is the most expensive automobile ever to hit Indian roads. The company will commence bookings for the car from next month.

Maybach has a mind-boggling array of features and gadgets, and one that is built to suit their tastes and preferences. Daimler Chrysler offers an amazing choice on Maybach's interiors. One can choose between six types leather, three types of wood and 17 colours. Also, there are over two dozen types of technical equipment such as keyless-go and active seat ventilation a buyer can opt for.

The 2.68-metre long interior of the car has handcrafted fine wood trim elements. DVD player, TV receiver, refrigerator compartment and cordless phone with two handsets are some of the other accessories. One can also opt for other accessories specially developed for Maybach, such as a made-to-measure luggage set to a silver champagne flute to a humidor to a golf bag.

Powered by a 5.5 litre petrol engine that can propel the car to 100 km per hour in just 5.4 seconds the car's maximum speed is 250 km per hour. A host of safety features, including 10 airbags, are also incorporated.

Samsung unveils new range of digital products
Samsung India Electronics Ltd has launched a range of digital products, including notebook computers, as it aims to emerge as a `digital lifestyle' company in the country.

Samsung will sell wireless-enabled Wi-Fi-enabled notebooks, printers, MP3 players and digital cameras in India. The notebooks, called `NotePCs', are priced from Rs 90,990 to Rs 1.57 lakh. NotePCs have a thickness of less than an inch, weigh 1.8 kg and will have a longer battery life.

The company says India is the third fastest growing mobile computing market in Asia and there is an immense opportunity for marketing lifestyle electronics products that improve user convenience and productivity in the country.

ProSoya Foods to launch low-carb soyamilk soon
Prosoya Foods (India) India plans to launch a low carbohydrate soyamilk in select cities of India under the brand name "Staeta."

The company has taken the technology owned by ProSoya Corporation of US and ProSoya Inc of Canada on license and improved it substantially to suit the tastes of the local people. This technology has been in use in over 40 countries.

At a price of Rs 12 per pack of 200 ml, Staeta will be offered in five varieties - natural, original, malt, chocolate and kesar-pista. The company is also planning to introduce one-litre packs with re-closable plastic caps.

Tata AIG's policy for Indian emigrants
Tata AIG General Insurance Company has launched a "Travel Guard Immigrant Travel Insurance Policy," in response to the Government of India's initiative for emigrant Indians under the Pravasi Bharatiya Bima Yojana scheme, 2003.

The scheme covers risks associated with working overseas and offers a compensation of rupees two lakh for death or permanent disability, Rs 10,000 hospitalisation cover and Rs 50,000 worth of medical cover for illness or accident, to the nominee or legal heir in the event of death or permanent disability of any Indian emigrant who goes abroad for employment purpose after obtaining emigration clearance from the concerned Protector of Emigrants (POE).

The company will offer this product from all its offices across India and agents.

Compiled by Mohini Bhatnagar

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