~ Launch will complement the existing portfolio in India, provide more ‘CHOICE’ ~

New Delhi, September 19, 2014

Coca-Cola India, one of the country’s leading beverage companies, today unveiled yet another strategic bet in its journey to achieve its 2020 Vision, by launching Coca-Cola Zero.

The launch adds to the Company’s suite of Sparkling and Still products, which now includes Minute Maid juice drinks, Kinley packaged water, Schweppes sodas and mixers, Georgia tea and coffee, Energy drink – BURN and a range of sparkling beverages. The introduction of Coca-Cola Zero – one of The Coca-Cola Company’s most successful and significant innovations – follows the launch of Maaza Milky Delite in Punjab and Kolkata and the expansion of Schweppes footprint, during the year.

Coca-Cola Zero offers the same ‘Great Coke Taste, with Zero sugar’ and is first being made available in the top 100 towns in India, both in traditional as well as modern trade. These cities contribute almost 90% of the SEC A urban population – a segment that is globally networked, well-traveled, has a distinct identity, is on-the-move and demands wider product choices.

With the launch of Coca-Cola Zero in India, the brand is now available in all the top 6 markets of The Coca-Cola Company, the others being USA, Mexico, China, Brazil and Japan. Coca-Cola Zero is one of the 17 billion dollar brands of The Coca-Cola Company in revenue terms and is one of the fastest to this milestone. It was first launched in 2005 and is now available in 149 countries including India.

Coca-Cola Zero adds to the hydration and refreshment choices available to the consumers in India.

In keeping with the bold, distinctive and individualistic character of Coca-Cola Zero, the first sip of the product was enjoyed by some of its most avowed consumers – actor Farhan Akhtar, Olympian luger, Shiva Keshavan, fashion designer, Sabyasachi Mukherjee and fashion photographer, Atul Kasbekar. They were joined on stage by Mr. Manpreet Gulri, Country Head, Subway; Mr. Alok Tandon, CEO, INOX Leisure; Venkatesh Kini, President, Coca-Cola India and South West Asia and Debabrata Mukherjee, VP Marketing, Coca-Cola India.

Farhan Akhtar

“I am really excited about the launch of Coke Zero in India. During my travels, I’ve had a chance to get the refreshing experience of Coke Zero and what took me by surprise was its almost identical taste to Coca-Cola Classic and that too with Zero sugar! This aspect, in particular, really makes it special. I am glad Coca-Cola India has decided to launch this globally successful product in India, considering the Indian consumer today is very evolved, well-travelled and aspires for nothing but the best. I wish the Coca-Cola India team the very best for this launch”.

Sabyasachi Mukherjee

“Coke Zero to me is the perfect symbol of the new Indian; Young, global, aspirational and at the same time ‘Classic’ at its core. I have been pretty intrigued and inspired by this brand. The way is has beautifully blended ‘Traditional’ with ‘Modern’. And I witness a lot of this trend in my line of work where I have the pleasure of meeting the young Indian consumer on a regular basis. As for me, I travel a fair bit and I have always looked forward to grab a can of Coke Zero. Having access to a chilled, refreshing Coke Zero in the Indian market is quite exciting I am delighted to be associated with one of my favoruite brands and wish them all the luck in their future endeavors. And you never know…..in my creative journey, someday Coca-Cola Zero could be the inspiration for something that I end up creating”.

Shiva Kesavan

“I am not a corporate honcho but I feel Coca-Cola is making a very smart move with the launch of Coca-Cola Zero. This zero variant of Coca-Cola will give people more reasons to consume Coca-Cola. For me, like most people, I have just loved the taste of Coke Zero. And therefore, depending upon the occasion people will drink regular Coca-Cola as well as Coca-Cola Zero. I have already decided – It will be red Coca-Cola for me after a game of tennis or squash and Coca-Cola Zero before lunch”.

In a gesture that recognized their love for Coca-Cola Zero, as also the availability of the product in India, four out of the 40,000 fans of Coca-Cola Zero on facebook, were presented the first packs of the product by Farhan Akhtar and Venkatesh Kini. Ayushi Markus (22 years) who is pursuing Chartered Accountancy stood alongside Vaibhav Gupta (25 years) – who explores the potential of new technologies as a career – to accept the first pack of Coca-Cola Zero. Vipul Bansal, a civil engineer and Karandeep Walia, a photographer were the other two lovers of Coca-Cola Zero to receive the first packs. These four youngsters have been following Coca-Cola Zero on facebook even before the launch of the product in India.

Speaking at the launch of Coca-Cola Zero in India, Mr. Venkatesh Kini, said; “As we move towards the halfway mark of the decade, it is important that we add new offerings to our portfolio even as we nurture the existing brands. Coca-Cola Zero comes at a time when Coca-Cola classic has established itself as one of the country’s favourite beverage brands with a wide distribution and manufacturing set up. It therefore complements our sparkling portfolio and leverages the manufacturing capacities that we have created over the last many years. We are on course to invest USD 5 BN by 2020 thereby providing beverage choices to consumers that complement their lifestyles and hydration needs. In a social and demographic set up, where consumers are increasingly demanding safe, hygienic, high quality and consistent hydration options, our portfolio is well placed to cater to the new age consumer’s requirements.”

The Coca-Cola System is innovating with new channels to build preference and anticipation for the beverage prior to the national, on ground, roll out. Coca Cola Zero will be available on Amazon India marketplace platform www.amazon.in so its customers across the country can experience it. Hindustan Coca-Cola’s own portal www.Coke2Home.com will be listing Coca-Cola Zero after 15 days of launch at Amazon.

Coca-Cola Zero, in modern trade outlets, will first be available across the Reliance Retail chain. Reliance Retail will also partner with us to create the biggest ever display of a Coca-Cola product, in-store, one that would possibly make it to the Limca Book of Records.

Amongst airlines, travelers aboard the IndiGo flights will be the first ones to enjoy Coca-Cola Zero while amongst the Quick Service Restaurants; Coca-Cola Zero will be available at Subway outlets. Partners like INOX Leisure will provide Coca-Cola Zero as additional choice on their menus.

Post 5th of October, 2014, Coca-Cola Zero will be available across the top 100 towns in India in more than 1.8 lakh outlets which includes traditional and modern trade.

Speaking at the launch of Coca-Cola Zero, Mr. Alok Tandon, CEO, INOX Leisure Limited, said,” The definition of choice is nowhere as pronounced as in the entertainment business. Twenty years ago, none us thought that we will have audiences for the kind of cinemas that actually do very well today. However, there is more to it than just the kind of cinema but the entire movie experience in multiplexes like INOX that seems to have graduated to another level. The choice of snacks, beverage options, pre-screening and post screening experience, technological advancement in terms of projection, sound, good acoustics etc, have seen a sea change over the years. I guess the one thing that has remained constant though, is Coca-Cola as a part of the movie going experience. We are happy to know that consumers can now choose the zero sugar option also along with the regular Coca-Cola. It is always great to have choice and our guests will enjoy Cocoa-Cola Zero and make it a part of their regular movie viewing experience.”

Coca-Cola Zero will be available in 300 ml slim cans, 400 ml PET bottles and 600 ml PET at the same price points as regular Coca-Cola. For instance in Delhi, the MRP of a 300 ml can will be Rs. 30/- while that of a 600 ml PET will be Rs. 35/-

Present at the launch,Mr. Manpreet Gulri, said, “Coca-Cola Zero ideally complements Subway’s food service offering that evolves continually with changing consumer tastes and preferences. I am sure discerning consumers would be delighted to pair-up Coca-Cola Zero with our range of low-fat sandwiches during our forthcoming promotion. Coca-Cola Zero makes for a great addition to the beverage options available at Subway restaurants and we are excited about the opportunity.”

Coca-Cola Zero will be manufactured at 10 Plants – Company owned as well as franchise owned – in different parts of the country.

Elaborating on the launch strategy and product attributes, Mr. Debabrata Mukherjee said, “Coca-Cola Zero is a part of our global Red-Silver-Black model on Coca-Cola Trademark. Its strength lies in its great taste and sharp brand positioning. To ensure that consumers get their first taste of Coca-Cola Zero, we will be sampling more than 1.5 million packs of the product in the next four months. We have a strong communication plan which includes digital media, television and print campaigns. The uniqueness of the product can be gauged from the fact that since its launch, it has done well in matured as well as emerging markets, across the globe. Its top 5 markets include countries like USA and Brazil. We expect that Coca-Cola Zero will hit all the right notes with consumers in India”

In another first for the Company, the entire launch event was broadcast live on www.coca-colaindia.com and fans of Coca-Cola Zero joined the launch conversation on twitter and facebook with the #cokezero.

About Coca-Cola India

Coca-Cola India is one of the country’s leading beverage companies, offering a range of healthy, safe, high quality, refreshing beverage options to consumers. Over the last 20 years, ever since its re-entry in 1993, the company has been refreshing consumers with its beverage products – Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Thums Up, Fanta, Limca, Sprite, Maaza, Maaza Milky Delite, Minute Maid range of juices, Georgia and Georgia gold range of hot and cold tea and coffee options, Schweppes, Kinley and Bonaqua packaged drinking water, Kinley Club Soda and BURN. The Company along with its bottling partners, through a strong network of over 2.2 million retail outlets, touches the lives of millions of consumers, at a rate of more than 500 servings per second. Its brands are some of the most preferred and most sold beverages in the country – Thums Up and Sprite – being the top two selling sparkling beverages.

The Coca-Cola India system already provides direct employment to 25,000 people and indirect employment to more than 150,000 people. The Coca-Cola system in India is contributing in its own small way to building sustainable communities and reducing its own environmental footprint. Some of our community development programs include the ‘Parivartan’ and ‘Pragati’ retailer training program, Career Development centers to train youth and make them employable, women empowerment program as a part of the global 5BY20 campaign, Unnati – a sustainable mango farming project etc.

For further information on the company’s India operations and its products, please visit: www.coca-colaindia.com.