‘Consumer education is of utmost importance in this category’

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With its recent launch of B3 (B Cube), an advanced sports nutrition supplement, the Yash Birla Group has become the first Indian company to foray into sports nutrition as such products were previously imported. N Venkat, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Yash Birla Wellness and Healthcare shares details about the product and plans for its pan-India launch with Usha Sharma

What prompted Yash Birla Group to foray into the sports nutrition category?

Yash Birla, Chairman, Yash Birla Group has a personal vision and passion in the fitness and wellness segment and his vision inspired us to launch B3 (B Cube). Also, we see that this market has reached critical mass and is growing at 30 per cent year-on-year. We feel that we can have the first-mover advantage by doing a pro-active category building.

How big is the sports nutrition market in India?

The total sports nutrition product category in India is estimated to be around Rs 300 crore per annum, and is growing at a pace of 30 per cent year-on-year.

Who are your competitors, both in the domestic and international markets?

Currently in India, Yash Birla Group is the first business house to venture into the sports nutrition arena in a pro-active way of product development, marketing and sales. There are few other international brands available in the Indian market, which are mainly imported and sold through distributors.

Tell us about B3 (B Cube) and its need in the Indian market?

B3 (pronounced as ‘B Cube’) stands for ‘Built By Belief’. It has a range of unique, breakthrough supplementary nutrition products that specifically address the demands of the Indian physique. It is based on the scientific rationale that every individual possesses a different physical structure. Therefore, their nutritional and fitness needs cannot be treated alike. B3 (B Cube) range of products addresses various health demands—whether it is that of a dedicated athlete or someone who is into general health and fitness.

What is the USP of B3 (B Cube)?

Our product B3 (B Cube) has been formulated and developed by international sports nutrition experts. We test our products in international reputed laboratories which has been accredited by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

Which category of people should take B3 (B Cube) and why?

People in India who take part in all the sports activities or general fitness can take our products. All our sports nutrition supplements have been made for the Indian population who are protein deficient and these are safe and effective.

Overall, how many products are available in the Indian market?

There are around four to five international brands available in India, which are imported and distributed. We will sell this product through advertisements and promotional activities.

What is your marketing strategy and brand positioning?

B3 (B Cube) is a premium sports nutrition brand and our consumers are mostly metro-centric, fitness enthusiasts. Since our consumers are mostly out-of-home and are socially active, our marketing strategy revolves around communicating brand positioning in outdoor media, as well as digital media.

We strongly believe that consumer education is of utmost importance in this category since every individual is physiologically different and his fitness goals also differ. Hence, B3’s (B Cube) marketing and advertising strategy will be geared to educate consumers about the personalised nutrition requirements and ways to achieve their goals.

What are your plans for its pan-India launch?

We plan to launch B3 (B Cube) in Mumbai, Delhi and other important cities  in the North and West regions in the next two months. And we anticipate that by October 2012, we will be able to launch in South region as well.

How many products are in the pipeline for sports nutrition category and what are the planned launch dates  in the Indian market?

We are launching 12 products under three consumer segments namely, health-conscious, fitness-conscious and sports professionals. All the products have been launched as of now. We will be launching another five products by January 2013.

Any plans to exports these brands?

We will explore opportunities in exports for our products in 2013-14.

u.sharma@expressindia.com

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