KOLKATA, India, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- American chocolate maker Hershey is unwrapping its top brands in a big way into the large Indian market through its own Indian subsidiary, a top company official said Tuesday.
After ending a five-year-old tie-up with the Godrej Group, the U.S. chocolate-maker is chalking out its growth strategy for its wholly-owned subsidiary Hershey India.
The company is planning to introduce its global chocolate brands such as Kisses and Reese's in India in the next few months. With this move, Hershey India will directly compete with multinationals Cadbury and Nestle in India.
The company is planning to leverage its global product development expertise to strengthen its Indian confectionery portfolio which includes Nutrine, Maha Lacto, Jumpin and Sofit.
Matthew Lindsay, managing director of Hershey India, said"We aim to drive growth in this important market through product innovation, brand building and investment in our people and processes."
While Hershey India is getting ready for its solo ride in India, Godrej Industries, too, is planning to strengthen its offerings in all its business."As part of our organic growth strategy, we are scouting for acquisitions in personal care, household insecticides and hair care sectors,"said Adi Godrej, chairman of the Godrej Group.
According to Godrej, the company had sold its stake in Godrej Hershey in line with its focused portfolio strategy."During our joint venture, we had a common distribution system for modern retail formats in India. Now, we will sell only our brands through this network,"said Godrej.
After its exit from the confectionery business, the company plans to strengthen its product portfolio in Godrej Tyson Foods, poultry and vegetarian products manufacturing business. "We have no plans to re-enter the confectionery business,"said Godrej.
In the 35 billion rupees (636 U.S. million dollars) branded chocolate sector in India, Hershey will face stiff competition from domestic as well as international brands such as India's top brand Amul and international brands like Nestle and Cadbury. "Hershey India has to build its brand right from the scratch amongst established players," said a Mumbai-based brand consultant.