FOR an alteration, the Mumbai-based designers of the major selling make of sugar biscuits, Parle Products, want to be in the limelight. The reason being that for the very first time, the low-profile company needs to fulfil its consumers dreams through its Parle-G My Aspiration Come True competition - its biggest campaign till time.
Setting besides a budget of almost Rs 2. 5 crore because of this contest exclusively, more than enforcing sales, the Parle-G brand is reinforcing its management position in the biscuit market while giving contestants an opportunity to fulfil their dreams.
States Pravin Kulkarni, Marketing Supervisor, Parle Products Pvt. Ltd, "We want to give children a program to fulfil their dreams. After all, thinking is synonymous with the brand prices of Parle-G, which results in all-round development to accomplish their dreams. " The promotion is the most significant of its kind and provides contestants the possibility to earn whatever they dream of in contrast to the original promos where prizes are set. This competition has only first prizes and these awards are defined as per the child's fantasy.
Launched in 1939, a lot more than 50-year-old brand of Parle-G is India's first sugar biscuit to be created from the home of Parle. Having a dominant volume share in the blood sugar biscuit market, Parle-G is pegged as the largest-selling biscuit brand on the globe, making up almost 80 % of Parle Products' turnover of Rs 1, 300 crore.
The family-run business operating from the traditional western suburb of Vile Parle in Mumbai has always implemented the philosophy of being low key with an endeavour to provide affordability. This biscuit and confectionery major has in reality not bothered to raise the price tag on its flagship brand for the past six years and has always attempted to provide its offerings at practically 33 % discount to competitive brands.
While the visible Britannia Establishments has been busy stretching its collection of brands with more superior offerings, Parle Products has never felt the need to be wary of competition. It has been enjoying a `far too' comfortable position in the biscuit market, especially in the greatest segment of glucose, with its Parle-G brand. Today it needs to stay generally focussed on its oldest biscuit brands, Parle-G, Monaco and Krackjack, and it is intentionally staying away from the top quality end of the Rs 2. 400-crore market.
Considering Parle-G has recently topped charts worldwide as disclosed by the US-based Bakery Manufacturers' Relationship, there seems to be no apparent dependence on concern. But you can find, since Britannia has costed its offerings on par with Parle, especially with respect to the latter's three main brands (Parle-G, Monaco and Krackjack). Closing the space in market show is thus an imminent possibility.
While Parle-G may be leading in the blood sugar category with a 65 per cent volume show, Tiger (Britannia's Glucose brand) is trailing at 23 per cent volume share, as per ORG-MARG. The difference in share between Monaco and Snax is also substantive but Krackjack and 50:50 are on par both in conditions of pricing as well as stocks.
Thus Parle is not actually expected to take a seat still. Apart from becoming more obvious and adding value to the imagery of its flagship brand through its just lately launched all-India contest, it continues to look at all brands within its stock portfolio either with intentions of adding more SKUs and variants or even introducing new offerings and pruning away some unfeasible brands. Thus, the concentrate is on loan consolidation of its biscuits and confectionery business in terms of adding more variants and SKUs to its traditions brands rather than looking into allied areas to get added expansion. Besides, Parle's interior research unveils that the biscuit market has graduated from the main blood sugar and Marie offerings to more value-added variations and that this applies to the rural marketplaces as well. Another finding exposed that packaging performed an essential role in both biscuits and confectionery, with regard to the acceptance of any brand.
Meanwhile, traveling on properties such as chess championships and cricket trophies, the Parle-G brand has been sponsoring activities occurrences in these areas propagating its worth of mental and physical health. Recently, the brand's setting has moved to `tasty healthy food' from diet and energy. It has additionally changed its presentation from the staid polish paper wrapper to a far more plastic and modern day cover because of its glucose brand.
Today Parle is checking out more variants because of its flagship brand, especially popular flavours such as chocolates, with an increase of price tips and SKUs (it already has eight) which range from its sugar biscuit brand between Re 1 for 25 gm and Rs 37 for just one kg. For the business, it seems sensible to stretch the franchise of its mass brand than that of premium brands such as Hide & Seek.
The limited amounts compiled from its advanced range of Hide & Seek have made Parle put its variants on hold. Says Daphne Nair, Brand Administrator, Parle Products, "There are not many takers at the prime points, specifically for niche variants like mint. We've thus made a decision to restrain the flavours of Disguise & Seek and limit it to a chocolate cookie. "
Launched in 1998, Cover & Seek was Parle's foray in to the top quality biscuit market with offerings in delicious chocolate, orange, coffee and mint. Leaving its preceding baseline, `Game with tastes buds', its new subject matter is `Best of both worlds'. Today Parle is convinced in providing both taste and health through its delicious chocolate and biscuit offering through Cover & Seek. Adds B. P. Aggarwal, Controlling Director, Surya Foods, supplier of the Priya Platinum make of biscuits, "Disguise & Seek has didn't make an impact. However, its glucose make of Parle-G is constantly on the rule the market. "
In fact, it is Britannia which is likely to have a larger value talk about among biscuits because of its high grade offerings and persists to hold a dominant position in the Rs 35-crore, 2, 000 tonnes per annum premium biscuit market while Parle reigns over the popular biscuit market with its flagship brand, Parle-G.
Says Jagdeep Kapoor, Managing Director, Samsika Marketing Consultants, "Both companies rule the biscuit market. Between them one has a stronghold on the favorite market and the other, on the prime. Occasionally they do have a tendency to transfer to each other's territories but on the whole they continue to mutually respect each other. "
Comparisons between brands can, however, be drawn directly between these two biscuit majors. For example, its sugary and salty biscuit of Krackjack is related to Britannia's 50:50 and comes as the next largest volume level brand in Parle's biscuits portfolio. It is accompanied by another of its traditions brands, its salty biscuit, Monaco, which has stretched to add flavours like cheese, jeera, methi and onion in the past and can be compared to Britannia's Maska Chaska, a variant of 50:50, which includes also come up with spicy natural and organic toppings.
Meanwhile, there are specific changes taking place within Parle's portfolio. Its more salty offering of the Nimkin brand of biscuits, which is present in the East, is finding your way through a nationwide roll-out while its cream biscuit brand (Fun Centre) will add more flavours to the current chocolates, orange, pineapple and elaichi with more SKUs wedding caterers to family packs. Besides, there will be extensions among its namkeen offerings of cheeselings, Jeffs and Sixer to include more products to the portfolio.
Within its confectionery stock portfolio, Parle has pegged its toffee brands such as Kismi, Lux, Dairy and Mayfair at the 25 paise price point. However, it needs the 50 paise price to become more viable. It already has a bunch of hard-boiled confectionery brands functioning in that section including the favors of Mango Bite, Tangy and Get 'n' Load up. This portion is expected to be a concentration area for the company. Explains Nair, "Even though 25 paise section is the biggest potential segment, almost all of the bigger companies cannot cover their overheads. The 50 paise section is the most feasible accompanied by the Re 1 price. "
A new toffee brand of Cafechino has just been launched at Re 1 down South while it has stretched the franchise of its Mango Bite to a juicy centre-filled offering at the same price. Confectionery brands in the rolls category include another history brand, Poppins, which was relaunched 2 yrs before with new flavours and product packaging while Rol. a. Cola is on the threshold of an identical exercise.
However, confectionery is not actually a thrust area for the company now and contributes only 15 % to the turnover, although the business enterprise is practically as old as its biscuits, having been launched in the past in 1929.
While key brands in the glucose and Marie category consist of the bulk (65 %) of the biscuit market, the bigger growth rates of 10-12 per cent appear to be coming from the non-core segments. Explains Nair, "There is certainly magnified value progress due to the higher margins in the non-core biscuit category. " Pegging development rate for the center biscuit market between seven and 10 per cent, the sugar biscuit category in India is currently predicted at Rs 1, 500 crore.
There is no dislodging Parle-G in its portion. Industry observers mainly attribute it to its well-entrenched circulation (the business covers 12-15 lakh outlets across the country) which can defeat any new player wanting to make an accessibility. In any case, the volumes are expected to result from this segment alone with the others (the non-core sections) including the salty and cream biscuits commanding meagre volumes between three and four % of the whole biscuit category, based on the company. The Marie segment, however, seems to register higher amounts of 12-13 per cent while the special and salty category registers a nine % volume in the market.
Considering India is supposed to be the world's second greatest biscuit industry (after China), before, several MNCs attempted stepping into the biscuit segment but failed due to the existence of unorganised players in the popular segment of the market.
According to the Federation of Biscuit Manufacturers, the per capita intake in India is about 1. 2 kg per annum, compared to 15 kg per annum in developed countries. Now there tend to be players preparing to setup shop like the favors of United Biscuits and Nestle (which has increased its stake in Excelsia Foods). But such players will have to take on Britannia in the prime market. Rivalling with Parle won't be easy in the favorite biscuit market in India, especially given that it has used the onus of satisfying its consumers' dreams.
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