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Singha weighs benefits of soft drink expansion

Singha Corporation, the country’s largest brewer, is interested in expanding into soft drinks to strengthen its non-alcoholic product lineup.

Singha Corporation, the country’s largest brewer, is interested in expanding into soft drinks to strengthen its non-alcoholic product lineup.

By exploring the opportunity in the 36-billion-baht carbonated soft drink market, Singha aims to raise the sales contribution of non-alcoholic drinks to 33% of total sales within five years, up from 12% of 90 billion baht last year.

A source in the drink industry said Singha had a strong idea to hire some factories to produce soft drinks for it.

“It’s possible that Singha will enter this intensely competitive soft drink market, which is now dominated by two super-brands, Coke and Pepsi,” the source said. “Singha has a strong distribution network in the traditional trade, which generates 75% of total soft drink sales in Thailand.”

While the soft drink market has long been dominated by two giants, AJE Thai Co’s Big Cola has already gained a one-third share in a short period.

Singha would not confirm any plans.

Meanwhile, Coca-Cola and its local bottler, ThaiNamthip, yesterday introduced two new flavours of Minute Maid Pulpy, a 20%-concentrate ready-to-drink juice, to the Thai market.

Charnvit Charindhorn, ThaiNamthip’s senior vice-president for new categories and new business development, said Minute Maid Pulpy had been successful since its launch in the Thai market almost two years ago and the product keeps growing at a record pace.

Sales of Minute Maid Pulpy in the first half of this year grew 86%, compared with overall 10% growth in the ready-to-drink juices market.

To sustain this strong growth for the whole year, Coca-Cola (Thailand) Co will spend 80 million baht to promote its new products among Thais, said marketing director Chanisa Kaewruen.

Sales of Minute Maid Pulpy last year totalled 700 million baht.

Chanin Thiencharoen, marketing manager of AJE Thai, said the company would spend 40 million baht to promote its drinks in the third quarter. It also hired the Korean pop band B1A4 as its new presenter for Big Cola in a 360ml plastic bottle.

B1A4 will help draw new and younger customers for Big Cola, he said. The new 360ml bottle will be available at all 7-Eleven convenience stores on Aug 8.

Source: Bangkok Post

ThaiVest Editorial Team

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