The brand Pepsi now has competition in its own backyard? Pepsi Aha, Pepsi India's lemon cola carbonated soft drink (CSD) launched earlier this year, has galloped to a sales volume of Rs 80 crore within four-and-a-half months of launch.
The good run of Pepsi Aha has, to an extent, come at the cost of the soft drink major's flagship brand, Pepsi Cola, to the extent of about 30-35 per cent. However, according to sources, the larger proportion of Pepsi Aha's market share has come from additional consumers. The brand has done well, specially in the 300 ml and 500 ml bottles," Ms Vibha Rishi, Pepsi India's Executive Director (Marketing), said.
While Aha was introduced in 500 ml PET bottles priced at Rs 15 each, the brand was rolled out in 300 ml glass bottles priced at Rs 10 each, a couple of months ago. Pepsi has invested in plastic shrink sleeve wrapping (on the neck of the bottle) for Aha glass bottles. Aha is also available in 330 ml cans for Rs 18 per can, besides in 1.5 and 2-litre PET bottles, and in 200 ml glass bottles in select markets. Aha is also being pushed in hotels and restaurants as a cocktail mixer.
According to company sources, the performance of Pepsi Aha has been among the key reasons for the company's good run so far this year, in addition to a prolonged summer and distribution expansion in small towns and rural markets.
The other high-performing brands in Pepsi India's portfolio this season have been clear lime soft drink 7-up positioned as a `solution to heat' and Mirinda Orange. Smaller, 200 ml bottled priced Rs 6-7, meanwhile, are being pushed only in select markets. Meanwhile, four new cocktail variants of Slice have been rolled out. Slice is estimated to be a Rs 200-crore brand.