Coca-Cola Plans To Double Volumes In Five Years Aided By Less Sugary Drinks
Bottles of Coca-Cola Classic move along a conveyor to the packaging area at a Coca-Cola production facility. (Photographer: Carla Gottgens/Bloomberg)

Coca-Cola Plans To Double Volumes In Five Years Aided By Less Sugary Drinks

The world’s largest beverages company took 21 years to sell one billion cases—or containers—containing its sugary sodas and drinks in India. It now intends to sell another billion in five years.

That comes also as Coca-Cola Co. aims to make India its third-largest market by volumes, from fifth-largest at present. However, James Quincey, the company’s chairman and global chief executive officer, didn’t specify a timeline for the same.

Coca-Cola, Quincey said, won’t be making further investments in India till 2022. “What we’re focused on is getting our investment plan that was running through 2022, completed preferably on or ahead of schedule that will support the growth that’s coming for the marketplace (India),” he told BloombergQuint today. The company, he said, would launch products at lower price points within its existing portfolio as well outside it.

The company had announced in 2013 that it would invest $5 billion in India and followed that up with another $1.7 billion four years later for the fruit circular economy, an initiative to source native produce to be infused in its beverages. Coke’s diversification beyond sugary drinks is part of its efforts to fend off competition from arch-rival Pepsi, among other competitors, and reach out to health-conscious consumers.

Sugar Content

Coca-Cola is working on reducing the sugar content in its beverages in three to four years and has already reduced it in Thums Up and Maaza to below six grams, T Krishnakumar, president-India and Southwest Asia of Coca-Cola, said. All new launches by the company won’t have more than six grams of sugar in the next three and a half to four years, he said. “Most of our new products which were expanded come with sugar levels, which are much below what has been prescribed by the WHO.”

Coronavirus Impact

Quincey told BloombergQuint that the impact of the novel coronavirus outbreak in China would “be temporary”.

The company is insulated from any short-term impact since it has buffers and contingency for its ingredients, he said, adding that if the virus spreads at an exponential rate globally, it would be a big issue.

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