Marketing review news
09 February 2006

Irfan Pathan to bowl for Gillette Vector Plus
Gillette India, has signed up Irfan Pathan, India's best all-rounder and a star achiever, as the brand ambassador for Gillette Vector Plus. The company says Irfan's continuous inspiring and match-winning performances, determination to give the best to his team and the fact that he is truly a 'self-made man', are all qualities that mirror the brand values of Gillette Vector Plus, which stands for giving the consumers the confidence of looking their best and facing each day with renewed enthusiasm. Gillette Vector Plus has been specially 'made for India' and is currently available at retail outlets across the country at a price of Rs. 49 only.

Sumeet Narang, regional business manager, blades and razors, India, Pakistan and South Asia, Gillette India, said, "Gillette Vector Pus has been designed and developed specially for the Indian market, as part of our vision to enable every Indian shaver to have the unmatched Gillette quality shaving experience, at a very affordable price."

Irfan Pathan is the first celebrity to be signed on by Gillette Vector Plus. His contract with Gillette India entails close association with the brand, including a TV and print advertising campaign. Irfan will also participate in various promotional activities for the brand.

Deutsche Bank signs on Sania Mirza as product ambassador for India
Deutsche Bank has signed on Sania Mirza, India's leading tennis player, as a product ambassador to promote Deutsche Bank's retail banking products and services in India. Sania Mirza said, "I am excited to partner such a respected global brand as Deutsche Bank. Over the last few months of my interactions with the Bank, I have found them very enthusiastic and passionate about achieving success for their customers. It is a quality that has appealed to me. I look forward to working with them to promote their excellent retail banking services to a large number of customers in the country."

A Deutsche Bank senior official said, "Having been a leading provider of financial services to the top Indian corporates and institutions for the last 25 years, Deutsche Bank aims to now extend its innovative, high-quality retail banking services to individual consumers in India. Ms Mirza's popularity as an icon of talent, determination and success is expected to resonate with our clients and will provide an impetus to our quickly establishing retail presence in India."

As its product ambassador, Sania Mirza will exclusively partner Deutsche Bank across the spectrum of retail products and services. She will endorse Deutsche Bank's retail offerings through advertisements, events and personal appearances.

Sania Mirza to feature in zany new Sprite ad
Coca-Cola India's fastest-growing carbonated brand in India, 'Sprite' is all set to launch a zany new TV commercial for the coming season featuring Sania Mirza — India's latest teen icon. The commercial will go on air from the February 11, 2006, on all leading television channels. The this advertisement takes the viewers through yet another straightforward and irreverent
experience for Sprite consumers.

Vikas Gupta, vice president marketing Coca-Cola India said, "Sprite is a no nonsense brand with an in-your-face and chilled out approach to life. Our communication has always exalted the brand as the thirst quencher, and baaki sab bakwaas! The current commercial retains this theme, yet interestingly incorporates Sania into the story. Like the masses we at Coca -Cola India too admire Sania not only for her game but also for her direct-speak and unpretentious approach to her achievements.'

The commercial has been produced by Sabal Sheikhawat and his production company 'Big Picture Company'. The creative agency-handling Sprite is Ogilvy & Mather, Delhi office.

Disney Launches Winnie the Pooh's 80th Celebrations
Mumbai: Disney is marking 'Winnie the Pooh's 80th anniversary in 2005/2006 with an 18-month celebration to be commemorated with an exciting range of entertainment activities and special edition products for fans across the Asia Pacific region.

Winnie the Pooh's 80th Anniversary kicked off in late last year with the New York premiere of Disney Live! and continues globally through 2007 with entertainment from Disney Live!, Buena Vista Home Entertainment and Walt Disney Records.

Disney Consumer Products will also offer exciting special edition products including clothing, stationery, toys and much more.

A new song My Friend Pooh -- from Walt Disney Records' artist, Ralph Covert, is also scheduled for release with celebrations culminating with the 2007 premiere of Disney Channel's learning-focused CG-animated series for preschoolers, My Friends Tigger and Pooh .

TTK Prestige to use US expert's name to tap high-end segment
TTK Prestige is foraying into the high-end segment of the US market for cookware and will be using US celebrity chef Rocco De Spirito's name for this. De Spirito presents programmes on cookery in the American TV and has authored various books on cookery.

The company marketing subsidiary in the US Manttra Inc, TTK Prestige, has signed an agreement with Rocco De Spirito to use his name and services to promote its products in the US and Canada stores.

The agreement is valid for five years with an option for renewal with mutual agreement.

TTK Prestige exports appliances worth $2 million to the US, consisting largely of pressure cookers. By using the "Rocco" brand, the company hopes to achieve the dual objective of expanding its volume and presence and garnering a sizeable share in the high-end market.

Brand placement valuation services offered by iTVX, Media e2e
New Delhi:
To help advertisers and media planners evaluate brand placements, iTVX (a New York-based product placements valuation company) and Media e2e (a strategic media studies group based in Mumbai and Hong Kong) have decided to set up a joint venture to cater to India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka markets.

The two companies will provide India's branded entertainment clients the iTVX system to help forecast, measure and validate the "quality" of product integrations deals. Currently the iTVX system, is being utilised in 15 countries especially in Japan, where Hakuhodo DY media partners after testing the system just secured a Master License for the system.

UB overhauls major brands launches new variants
UB is revamping some of its largest selling brands and is planning to launch new variants of some of its brands. This includes a complete relaunch of Romanov vodka and a diet variant of McDowell's No. 1 Whisky.

Romanov vodka has been relaunched with new packaging and its manufacturing process has been upgraded while McDowell's No 1 whisky will now be available in an easy-to-carry flexi-pouch as well as in a diet variant Diet Mate.

Romanov is available in a new packaging and is now triple distilled, which is in line with international standards of vodka manufacturing.

Battery powered two-wheelers launched in Gujarat
Electrotherm India, an Ahmedabad-based induction furnace technology company, has launched a range of battery-powered two-wheelers branded YOBikes' in Gujarat.
The company says the vehicles are unique as they neither require registration and payment of road tax, nor do they require a driving license to drive them. The company hopes to gradually roll out the bikes across the country in the coming months, starting with Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra by April.

The company claims that the YOBikes have a range of 40-60 km on a four-hour charge and have a top speed of 25km per hour to stay within the government norms for vehicles that do not require registration. Seven models of YOBikes have been launched to cater to different customer requirements.

The pricing of the two wheelers is aggressive and ranges from Rs 13,999 to Rs 23,249.

Electrotherm has also developed a battery-powered three-wheeler autorickshaw in collaboration with the National Institute of Design.

Frito-Lay becomes more musical
Pepsico's snack food brand Frito-Lay is now being associated more and more with music. Apart from being the lead sponsor for the Bryan Adams shows held across the country Frito-Lay wants to expand its base in music by launching audio CDs and videos based on its latest variant, Latino Style, and then take it forward to other genres.

According to the company Lays has always been an iconic youth brand and music is a platform which connects with the youth.

Frito-Lay will soon launch a music video featuring its brand ambassador — Saif Ali Khan. The album would have music composed by singer Suleman who has created bollywood numbers from films like Dhoom, the music album has been named as `Lays Latino Salsa'.

Since its entry in India in 1989, Frito-Lay India has become the leader in branded salty snacks. It manufactures, markets and distributes its products throughout the country.

The company's line-up of snacks includes potato chips, extruded snacks, traditional `namkeen' snacks and a variety of bridge products, each in a variety of flavours. It includes snacks developed in India, as well as globally.

Canon revamping distribution
Canon India is launching its business strategy that combines technology with marketing. The new strategy is centred on building a technology portfolio with aggressive marketing initiatives.

For one the company is planning to de-layer the distribution channel in phases by restructuring the channel model for faster information flow, increasing retail expansion and shifting its selling focus from volumes to `value.'

The company currently has 28 Digiclick zones for photoproducts, 13 Home Cinema centres for projectors and 71 IT Imaging zones for printers. It has engaged 150 retail partners. For strengthening the channel connection, Canon is planning extensive Web site support, extranet for partners and a printed collateral for communication. The company has rolled out more than 50 products in 2005 and achieved a leadership position in the digital camera space (in the East) with a 32 per cent market share. Digicams have contributed around 16 per cent of its turnover.

Usha Brita to introduce `Watermall' to other cities
New Delhi:
Usha Shriram Brita is planning to introduce its `Watermall' chain to other cities. The company will add 12 more shops in as many cities including Kanpur, Chandigarh, Ludhiana and Hyderabad in the next one year.

The company currently has three shops in the capital.
These shops offer solutions not only for drinking water but also for soft water for washing and bathing.

According to the company consumers can walk into the shop with a sample of water from one's locality and get it tested. Based on the results, a water purification system would be advised to the customer. Although the company also has direct selling teams, the new format would phase out the existing format in three to five years.

The first three Watermalls, set up in the middle of last year, are sized 200sq. ft. each and offer all the 15 water purifiers that the company sells. The purifiers are priced between Rs 3,500 and Rs 50,000. The company has been selling around 200 units a month through each outlet.

The water purifier market is estimated at around Rs1,000 crore and is growing at 22-25 per cent per annum with about 65 per cent in the organised sector.

Usha Brita is a 50:50 joint venture between Usha Shriram and Brita Gmbh of Germany.

Now, cut out the clutter and watch what you want
Now TV viewers can skip the commercials and watch their favourite saas-bahu serials within minutes.

Pune-based company K.e.e.n., wholly owned subsidiary of K.e.e.n. Inc of the US, has launched its flagship product Wizo - a concept in home entertainment, which will help people to completely control how and when they watch TV. Wizo is a digital video recorder, which can record all the desired TV programmes even while the viewers are away at work.

Milind Pandit, managing director of K.e.e.n, talking about the product said for customer convenience seven models with varying ranges of programming time are being launched.

The base model, with a price tag of Rs 19,950, has a programming time of 40 hours and the end of the range stands at Rs 33,000 for 125 hours of record time. The base model allows storage for as many as 15 movies, five days of cricket, 75 episodes of serials at one time. Upgrade scan provides up to 250 hours of programming.

Wizo also has the ability to pause, rewind or fast forward any programme even Live TV.

The company has tied up with 75 channels.

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