BEIJING--Coca-Cola Co. and Pepsico may dominate China's cola market but that's not deterring local cola brands from putting up a strong marketing fight. Fenghuang Cola, produced by a South China company, has gone so far as to lure Jackie Chan, one of the most admired film celebrities in Asia, to star in a major TV commercial. Another feisty brand, Future Cola, is also making inroads into the cola market only a year since its debut. Developed by the Wahaha Group, it enjoys a price advantage over Coca-Cola. One 500ml bottle of Future Cola is almost six cents cheaper than the same volume of Coke. China's largest brewery, Yanjing Brewery Group, is also joining the action with the recent launch of its own cola brand. A cut-throat price war is likely by the autumn, according to Zong Qinghou, general manager of the Wahaha Group based in Hangzhou of East China's Zhejiang Province.
Copyright June 1999, Crain Communications Inc.