LOCAL INDIAN DRINK IS COKE'S TOP BRAND

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(Aug. 22, 2001) BOMBAY -- Homegrown brands are coming of age. Coca-Cola India has announced that Thums Up, the established Indian cola brand it acquired some years ago, is outselling Coca-Cola and the company's entire portfolio of 14 brands it markets here.

Coca-Cola India Vice President Sripad Nadkarni said Thums Up is the company's leading brand by volume, though no precise figures were released.

For the quarter ended in June, Thums Up has gained one point in market share, although some observers question whether this was at the expense of Pepsi or its sister brand Coca-Cola.

Thums Up has been aggressively marketed, most recently with the "Thums Up Challenge" blind taste test, which is being used to position Pepsi as a sweet-tasting drink for young children.

The ad agency for Thums Up is Leo Burnett, while Hindustan Thompson Associates handles Pepsi. -- Sarika Gupe

Copyright August 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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