Coca-Cola cracks the most elusive market in India – the country’s hinterlands
In a landscape where some consumer goods companies grapple with sluggish rural demand, Coca-Cola India stands out, experiencing faster growth in rural markets compared to urban counterparts. The expansion of electrification coverage in rural India, improved incomes, and increased government spending have propelled the beverage giant’s growth in these regions, reaching approximately 3.2 lakh out of an estimated 6.6 lakh villages across the country.
The adoption of Unified Payments Interface (UPI) in rural areas has also played a pivotal role, facilitating small-ticket payments for consumers. The infrastructure support that the government has built in terms of electrification and UPI has helped drive rural growth. Also, digital penetration has added to consumer awareness and it is a big booster. Rural, for us, is definitely growing 3% faster than urban today,” Sundeep Bajoria, VP, India operations at Coca-Cola India told TOI.
Despite inflation posing a challenge for companies, Bajoria acknowledges its reality and emphasizes the importance of devising the right pricing strategy. Coca-Cola India aims to ensure that its products are appropriately priced for different consumption occasions, with particular attention to key price points such as Rs 10, 20, and 50, which hold greater significance in rural regions.