Ahmet C. Bozer (centre) at the new bottling plant in Greater Noida on Thursday. (AFP)
New Delhi, Aug. 22: Coca-Cola today said it expected India to become one of its top five markets in the next seven years and would pump in $5 billion in the country as planned by 2020.
“If we continue to focus on doing the right things in this market, India could emerge as a top five market for the Coca-Cola Company by 2020,” Coca-Cola International president Ahmet C. Bozer said here today.
At present, India is the seventh-largest market for the Atlanta-based firm.
Bozer said the company was going ahead with its investments of $5 billion in the country till 2020 to further capture growth opportunities in the packaged beverage market.
“Our investments in India are on track as we build scale, manufacturing capacity, distribution capability and a robust product portfolio to realise our business goals,” Bozer said.
Last year, the beverages giant had announced that it, along with its partners, would more-than-double the investment in the country to $5 billion by 2020.
The investment, which is higher by $3 billion from the previous announcement made in November 2011 for a period of five years, will be on various activities, including setting up of bottling plants.
Coca-Cola has registered a volume growth in India for the past 28 consecutive quarters, 19 of which have seen double-digit growth. “This is just the beginning, we have just started here. Even some of the neighbouring countries have more per capita consumption. So, there is a lot of scope for growth in India,” Atul Singh, Coca-Cola pacific group deputy president, said.
The company today inaugurated its plant in Greater Noida. It now has 57 plants in India — 22 are franchise plants, 23 company-owned and 12 contract packaging plants.
“We have now laid a solid foundation for our business, which we believe, can contend with some of the economic headwinds that we see unfolding,” Singh said.
The franchise bottling plant has an annual water recharge potential of 1.6 lakh kilo litre and is Coca-Cola’s second can line. Moon Beverages, which is the franchise partner, has invested over Rs 140 crore to set up the plant.
This plant has two lines — a can line to manufacture beverages and a still beverage line.