Recently we heard that the retail segment of fast-moving goods was facing the threat of modern trade. At present they are facing huge pressure, especially during this time of crisis due to the COVID pandemic. Even though this problem persists, the cookies maker Unibic has set an aggressive expansion plan. In the 35,000 crore INR business market, Unibic, a relatively smaller player with a top line of 500 crores and a Bangalore based company, is looking to set up a new plant, which will help it double production capability.
They have decided to invest around $12 million, which is around 87 crore INR and the plan is to set up the new plant in the central part of the country. The new facilities will be built in the next 14-18 months and they aim at producing a capacity of around 100 tonnes of cookies per day. Furthermore, they also have a production line for snack bars and crackers.
Unlike bigger competitors like Britannia, Unibic is focusing more on the urban market which has insulated from the demand slowdown in the FMCG sectors. The company’s other factory is located in Tumakuru near Bengaluru, which has a manufacturing capacity of 36,000 tonnes per annum. According to Vudayagiri, the company has been seeing a steady growth of 15 percent, which is three times higher when compared to the industry average. In the current year, Unibic plans to launch four new variants of cookies and by 2023 they plan to reach their new target, which is to double their revenue to 1000 crore INR, by diversifying into new categories such as crackers and new product launches.
Unibic is altering its flavors and packaging to gain traction in the northern and western parts of the country. For instance, the company has recently launched a butter variant of cookies called Butterly which is mainly focused in Central India where people have a taste for butter cookies. During the winter months of December and January, it has also gained traction in sales for ginger cookies in the northern states.
It is very difficult to crack the market in rural India because they don’t have much money for spending on snacks. Hence Unibic is trying to get a foothold by introducing products at a cheaper price and as of now, 45 % of the revenue generated by Unibic is from Southern India.