Campa-Cola’s comeback to take on Coca-Cola in an all-new era of beverage wars! What’s next?
The scorching heat of summer has always been synonymous with the sweet goodness of soft drinks. With rising temperatures, the market for these refreshing beverages has always seen a surge in demand. However, things will be different this year and difficult for soft drink companies!
The reason for this is the unexpected comeback of the iconic Campa Cola brand. It once dominated the Indian market in the 1970s. Now, under the leadership of Reliance Group, the brand has resurfaced with a facelift, sending shockwaves through the cola industry. This resurgence of Campa Cola has sparked a fierce price war among the existing players, with Coca-Cola already reducing its prices in some states with low stocks.
According to Business Standard, Coca-Cola has decided to reduce the price of its product, with a 200 ml glass bottle of Coca-Cola now priced at Rs 10 in Telangana, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh – down from its original price of Rs 15. That’s a flat deduction of Rs 5! Also, a 200 ml bottle of Campa Cola costs Rs 10, making it an attractive alternative for consumers.
As the competition intensifies, it begs the question – why did Reliance Group take on Campa Cola, and what is the history behind this iconic brand? Let’s dive deep into the intriguing story of Campa Cola!
History of Campa Cola in India
The history of Campa Cola in India dates back to 1949 when Coca-Cola, the American soft drink giant entered the Indian market in partnership with Pure Drink Group, an Indian company. From 1949 to 1970, Pure Drink Group was the only Coca-Cola distributor in India. However, in 1973, the Indian government passed the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act, which required foreign companies to name 60% equity shares of the company in the name of an Indian company and transfer technical knowledge. Additionally, companies had to renew their import license from the RBI every three years.
Coca-Cola refused to share its secret formula. After the government changed in 1977, Morarji Desai became the Prime Minister of India, and soon Coca-Cola had to shut down its operations in India.
In 1977, the Indian government launched a government cola company named ‘77′, but it failed to gain popularity among consumers because of its taste.
Seeing an opportunity, the owner of Pure Drink Group decided to launch a new brand named ‘Campa Cola’.
Campa Cola entered the Indian market and soon dominated it. From 1977 to 1992, the Campa Cola brand ruled the Indian soft drink market with its slogan, ‘The Great Indian Taste’.
In 1991 India globalised its economy and opened its doors to the world, and Coca-Cola returned to the Indian market. However, Campa Cola struggled to compete with global giants like Coca-Cola and Pepsi and lagged. By 2012, Campa Cola’s condition worsened, and the company was on the verge of closure. Despite its glorious past, the brand failed to regain its position in the market.
Campa Cola 2.0
Reliance Industries acquired the Campa Cola brand last year for Rs 22 crore. Although there were plans to launch the product during Diwali, it did not happen. After the Holi festival in 2023, the Reliance Group finally launched the product in the Indian market. Initially, the company entered the market with three flavours: Campa Cola, Campa Lemon, and Campa Orange. The launch was limited to the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The return of this iconic brand after 50 years is bound to create a stir among other cola companies in the market, considering its past success and the Reliance Group’s reputation for dominating the industries they enter.
Experts suggest that being an Indian brand could give Campa Cola an advantage, but the taste is a crucial factor. Despite Campa Cola’s success in the past, Coca-Cola and Pepsi still hold a significant market share in India. Nevertheless, the increasing competition is expected to stimulate growth in the Indian beverage industry.
According to Statista, the soft drinks market in India is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5.40% annually from 2023 to 2027.
The ‘Great Indian Taste’ has made a strong comeback in the market. However, only time will tell how well consumers will receive it.
That’s it for today. We hope you’ve found this article informative. Remember to spread the word among your friends. Until we meet again, stay curious!