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Schweppes Novida trickles in

NAIROBI, November 27- The commercial beverage volume for non-alcoholic malt based drinks in Kenya is under one percent and this represents a huge potential for market players to tap into.

Coca- Cola East and Central Africa Marketing Director Maserame Mouyeme on Thursday predicted that the figure was likely to double or triple in the next few years as the players continue to introduce different categories of drinks into the market.

“Even with existing players, this remains a largely unexploited category. We have made significant investment plans to ensure that we tap into the potential segment fully,” Mouyeme disclosed adding that the company had set itself up to change the situation by introducing its first fruit-flavoured malt-non-alcoholic beverage into the Kenyan market.

She added that according to research, non-alcoholic malt based drinks represent about three million unit cases or 16 million litres of the beverage volume.

Speaking during the launch of the drink, dubbed ‘Schweppes Novida’ Mouyeme said the beverage which is mainly targeted at young adults, comes in three flavours and would initially be offered in Nairobi and later introduced in other parts of the country.

The product will be available in 300ml returnable glass bottles and in 250ml slim-line cans that will be retailing at Sh25 and Sh45 respectively.

Mouyeme expressed confidence that the introduction of ‘Schweppes Novida’ would not eat into their soda market share.

She explained that the company has an eight-beverage portfolio that includes sparkling beverages and light variants such as Coke, Fanta and Sprite Light, Dasani bottled water and Minute Maid fruits juices and added that the launch of ‘Schweppes Novida’ would help boost their market share.

“The introduction of Novida into the Kenyan market is part of a global strategic move to meet the ever changing consumer demands and tastes. We are alive to this fact and are dedicated to continuous innovation,” she added.

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Although she declined to give the figures, the Marketing Director hinted that their production capacity would be more than seven million bottles.

‘Novida’, she said, would be supported by a fully integrated marketing campaign that includes electronic advertising, billboards and interactive media such as the Capital FM website.

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