Parle Agro, which has just entered the confectionery market with Simply Imlee, is making sure that it is covering all possible distribution alternatives.
The product, which was first launched in Pune in January, has been made available in addition to grocery stores, at dry cleaners and boutiques as well.
“We were very clear we wanted to cover all possible locations, and the response to the product in these locations has been pretty encouraging,” said Nadia Chauhan, director marketing, Parle Agro.
Since imli is a popular flavour with women, many boutiques are happy to stock on these just to offer it to their customers, she added. This strategy she says, has paid off very well so far and they will continue along similar lines for other cities as well.
Simply Imlee, which is made of tamarind and is in a chewy format, is already present across Maharashtra and in parts of Tamil Nadu with Kerala being the next state on the agenda.
The national roll out is likely to be completed within three months, around which time the company will kick off its advertising campaign as well.
“Our agency Gray Worldwide has created special characters like Chewmantar, Chewperman and Chewminister which will be used in our advertising as well as at schools and parks,” said Chauhan. Along with this product, the Rs 2.50 Frooti pack is also being distributed through the same set up.
In addition to the existing distribution set up, Parle is also looking at tapping institutions as well as airlines to supply to them.
Chauhan says that while its still too early to say how the business will grow, she is clear that they are looking at making it as big as their beverage business.
The beverage brands include Frooty, Appy and N-Joi. “We will be introducing more brands in the confectionery business soon, but it certainly won’t be hard boiled sweets. We are clear that we want to be the pioneers in whatever products we introduce, “ she said.
The company has set up a separate team to look into this part of the business. She also doesn’t rule out entering other food categories at a later stage, although at present the focus is clearly on confectionery.