Beverage Industry

Coca-Cola invests $3 billion in India

June 26, 2012

Coca-Cola India announced that the Coca-Cola system will invest an additional $3 billion in India through 2020 to further capture growth opportunities in the country’s fast-growing non-alcohol ready-to-drink (NARTD) beverage market. With the new investment, the Coca-Cola system now plans to invest $5 billion in India through 2020, the company noted.

“Achieving continued sustainable, responsible growth in India is core to achieving our 2020 vision of doubling system revenues this decade,” said Muhtar Kent, chairman and chief executive officer of The Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, in a statement. “Our ongoing investment in India is focused on delivering innovation, partnerships and a portfolio that enhances the consumer experience, ensures product affordability and builds brand loyalty to deliver long-term growth.”

The Coca-Cola Co. and its bottling partners have robust plans to capture growth in India with investments in innovation, expansion of distribution network, cold drink equipment placement and augmentation of manufacturing capacity, according to the company.

It noted the growth potential of NARTD beverages in the country. Coca-Cola India has registered unit case volume growth for the last 23 quarters, 17 of which have seen double-digit growth, it said. Two of the company’s core sparkling brands — Thums Up and Sprite — are the country’s top-selling soft drink brands while brand Coca-Cola is one of the country’s fastest-growing sparkling brands, most recently reporting 27 percent growth in the first quarter, the company noted. In the still beverage category, Coca-Cola’s Maaza is India’s top-selling juice drink.

Today’s announcement brings the company’s total investment to $7 billion since it re-entered the country in 1993. The Coca-Cola India system currently directly employs more than 25,000 people and is estimated to have created indirect employment for more than 150,000 people in related industries through its vast procurement, supply chain and distribution system.

The Coca-Cola system has a long history of partnership with non-governmental organizations in India for community development and sustainability initiatives. As a system, Coca-Cola has now achieved a net zero balance with regard to groundwater usage in India, according to the company. It is well integrated with local Indian communities and is a contributor to economic and social growth, it said. The company and its bottling partners are strong supporters of education in India through programs such as the ”Coca-Cola Support My School” campaign, which has created more than 100 model schools in India.

Worldwide, The Coca-Cola Co. and its bottling partners are investing more than $30 billion during the next five years to support anticipated growth. These investments range from new manufacturing facilities to new distribution systems to new marketing investments in emerging economies.