Tata Consumer enters the premium D2C coffee market

Tata Consumer Products Ltd (TCPL) has launched premium roast and ground coffee under the Sonnets brand targeting urban and increasingly demanding coffee drinkers in India.

The move marks TCPL’s first foray into the direct-to-consumer market and will allow the company to tap into a growing number of shoppers shopping online, particularly during the pandemic, when most are locked away in inside and unable to visit cafes and cafes.

The sonnets will be sold exclusively online, for now.

“We have focused on growing our business, particularly in beverages, ie tea and coffee. As part of the focus on the coffee portfolio – which in India is largely instant filter coffee – the idea was how to continue to introduce innovations. Sonnets is a step in that direction, aimed at a more discerning consumer looking for freshly ground roasted coffee delivered to their doorstep, ”said Puneet Das, president, packaged beverages, India and South Asia, TCPL.

Sonnets comes from the Tata Coffee plantations in South India. The Indian home coffee market mainly consists of instant coffee and filter coffee powder from companies such as Nestlé India, Hindustan Unilever Ltd and TCPL.

The launch of Sonnets will pit TCPL against new generation coffee brands such as Dope Coffee Roasters, Blue Tokai and Araku, which specialize in selling premium roast and ground coffee. These brands have found favor with coffee connoisseurs in India.

The premium coffee market is pegged to 70 crores to 100 crore a year, Das said. The market is changing in terms of coffee consumption. The launch of the new brand will allow TCPL to expand its portfolio as it attempts to capture a greater share of the Indian packaged food and beverage market, he added.

Last year, TCPL announced the acquisition of PepsiCo’s stake in NourishCo Beverages Ltd, a joint venture between the two companies.

Earlier this year, he announced the purchase of Kottaram Agro Foods, the Soulfull brand maker of millet-based breakfast cereals and snacks.

TCPL currently sells pulses, spices and ready-to-cook mixes under the Tata Sampann brand. It also sells drinks under the brands Tata Tea, Tetley, Eight O’Clock Coffee, Tata Coffee Grand in India and abroad.

In a recent interview, Managing Director and CEO Sunil D’Souza said that “TCPL’s ambition is to become a large FMCG company” with an immediate focus on food and beverage. Sonnets will also be available on Amazon. However, Das said the shift to offline retailing may take time.

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