Perfetti to boost Indian plant capacity on market gains

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Chocolate confectionery market Perfetti van melle Confectionery India

Perfetti van Melle is set to increase capacity in a plant in southern India as its two year long marketing efforts pay dividends in terms of its gum and éclair market penetration, according to a report in the Hindu Business Line.

Current 17,000 tonne capacity of its Chennai facility will be bolstered by over 50 per cent, claims managing director of PVM India, Sameer Suneja,

The current capacity for the company in India is 70,000 tonnes, with manufacturing bases in two other locations in Northern India.

PVM India is also responsible for the development of the South Asian markets and exports to other Asian countries.

Suneja told the Indian media outlet that mints and fruit-flavoured candy are not achieving the same level of market penetration as chewing gum or éclairs, while growth is also slow for its boiled sweets and lollipop categories.

PVM, which has a 25 per cent share of the Indian confectionery sector, entered the market in 1994 with the launch of its brand Center Fresh. The following year saw the introduction of the chewing gum and confectionery chew brands, Big Babol and Alpenliebe, respectively.

The launch of other PVM products including Chocoliebe, Chlormint, Mentos, Fruittella, Cofitos, Happydent and Marbles followed subsequently.

Euromonitor claims India is deservedly the focus of many companies' expansion policies as it is a good example of a market in which economic growth is positively impacting demand for more expensive chocolate confectionery items, and there is room for growth.

The growing Asian economies and rising consumer affluence have resulted in consumers gradually trading up from sugar to chocolate confectionery.

And the category is expected to outperform both sugar confectionery and chewing gum over the 2008-2013 forecast period, according to a July 2009 report from the market analysts.

However, competition in the attractive Indian chocolate confectionery market is very strong from rival international players, said the industry researchers.

Jonathan Thomas, confectionery maket specialist at Leatherhead Food International, told that though Cadbury and Nestlé are strong in India, much of this is derived from their respective strengths in the chocolate market, rather than in sugar confectionery, so it is possible that Perfetti could gain market share at Cadbury’s expense.

"The main challenger for Perfetti Van Melle’s products as I see it is Cadbury’s Eclairs, which enjoy a strong following in India,"​ he added.

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