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ITC plans to eat into Britannia’s cookie pie
The Times of India - 26 Nov 2014

Cookies, the new darling  of the Indian biscuit market, look all set to see a big corporate battle  between Britannia and ITC for leadership. The Rs 6,800crore segment  is the fastest-growing among different segments of biscuit industry and has  dethroned glucose as the biggest segment already. ITC is now planning to make  inroads into the lucrative mid premium cookies segment now ruled by Good Day of  Britannia, the undisputed king of the segment with over 90% marketshare.

The FMCG-to-tobacco-to-hospitality  conglomerate is introducing Sunfeast Mom's Magic in the mid-premium cookies  segment. The industry insiders feel that the move by the FMCG giant  is aimed at garnering a sizeable share of the mid-premium cookie segment. Mom's  Magic is available in two variants - Rich Butter and Cashew & Almond, which  is also available in Good Day stable. The range is priced at Rs 10, Rs 15, Rs  20 & Rs 30. "Sunfeast Mom's Magic is the brand's Endeavour to broaden  its base in the cookie segment, the largest segment in biscuits," a source  in ITC said. According an industry expert, Sunfeast is already the third  largest player in the cookies segment in India and offers differentiated  products across price segments.

The cookies segment is growing at  a CAGR of 14% in India. The mid-premium cookies segment is relatively  smaller in size with Rs 1,800crore consumer spends but has witnessed a CAGR of  20% in recent years. Britannia is also not sitting idle and to maintain its  leadership in the lucrative cookies segment it has strengthened Good Day  portfolio with the introduction of a new brand in the family Chunkies.  A Britannia spokesperson said Good Day is the largest brand in the  cookies segment and has remained so ever since its inception close to three  decades ago. It is also the largest brand in the Britannia stable.

"Business on Good Day is going  great guns, clocking great growth numbers in 2013-14 and continuing to build on  that in 2014-15. The brand is expanding its footprint in thousands of new  consumer households. It is the most preferred biscuit brand in India and a new  member - Chunkies, has now been added to the Good Day family to take this  legacy forward," A Britannia spokesperson said. Good Day, according to the  spokesperson, is a Rs1600crore brand.

"It has remained the leader of the  cookies category for close to 30 years now and sells over 50 lakh packs every  day as per our estimates," the spokesperson added.

Commenting on the entry into mid premium  cookies range, the divisional chief executive of foods of ITC, Chitranjan Dar  said, "Today, there is growing consumer franchise for premium and super  premium offerings. Given the changing tastes and preferences of the Indian consumers,  cookies are one of the most preferred biscuit segments to operate in. With the  launch of Mom's Magic, ITC is augmenting its bouquet of differentiated  offerings in this segment."
He pointed out that the cuisine expertise of its hotels business as well as its  marketing and distribution strength has helped Sunfeast stay ahead of its  competition.

Commenting  on the cookies battle, Amnish Agarwal, senior VP research (FMCG) of Prabhudas  Liladhar, said cookies market has expanded considerably in recent years.  "The launch of smaller packs in this segment also helped the lower and  middle segment of cookies to grow and these two segments will continue to grow  at a healthy rate. So leading players will look for a bigger pie of this  segment," he added.

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