Coca-Cola to put $2 billion into India

15 Nov,2011

By A Correspondent

Coca-Cola India has announced that Coca-Cola System will be investing US$2 billion in India in the next five years, beginning 2012. The investment is to further capture the opportunity in the Indian nonalcoholic ready-to-drink (NARTD) beverage market. India is a strategic growth country for the company ranking among its top 10 markets in volume globally and as the largest market in the Eurasia and Africa Group.

Commenting on the development, Ahmet C Bozer, Coca-Cola’s President, Eurasia and Africa Group, said, “India is one of our most important growth markets as we work toward our 2020 Vision of doubling system revenues and servings this decade. The opportunity in the packaged beverage segment is immense, and our efforts in India are focused on being the beverage of choice all day, every day.  If we continue to do the right things each day and at all times, it would not surprise me if India becomes one of the top five markets for the Company globally by the end of this decade.”

NARTD beverages have enormous growth potential in India.  The Coca-Cola Company and its bottling partners have robust plans to capture this opportunity with investments in innovation, consumer marketing and brand building, expansion of distribution and cold drink equipment placement as well as further development of manufacturing capacity to meet growing consumer demand.

The Coca-Cola system has already invested over US$2 billion in India since it re-entered the country in 1993, and currently it directly employs more than 25,000 people. The system 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 current investments announced by Coca-Cola will further catalyze economic growth and create new opportunities for the local community. The Coca-Cola system currently employs more than 700,000 people worldwide.

Atul Singh, President  & CEO, Coca-Cola India and South West Asia, said, “This investment is a part of our long-term commitment to invest in innovation, partnerships and a portfolio of brands that will enable us to grow our business in a sustainable and responsible way. In addition to our infrastructure and capabilities, the new investment will also focus on enhancing the consumer experience, building brand loyalty and contributing to environmental sustainability and community development. Our India business has been growing at a robust rate over the last five years, and our goal is to continue this growth momentum. The country’s demographics, economic and social parameters are all huge drivers of growth and we have to ensure that we capitalize on the opportunity.”

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.  It is well integrated with local Indian communities and is a valued contributor to economic and social growth. The Company and its bottling partners are strong supporters of education in India through programs like the ‘Coca-Cola NDTV Support My School’ campaign, which is aimed at creating more than 100 model schools in India. The Company also supports sports programs to encourage active, healthy living such as the Coca-Cola Under-16 Cup cricket tournament, the Coca-Cola Mir Iqbal Hussain Trophy football tournament, Sprite Gully Cricket and Sprite NBA Jam.

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

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