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PEPSI-COLA CLOSES SUMMER WITH A BANG; JULY/AUGUST 7 PERCENT SALES SURGE BIGGEST IN LAST FIVE YEARS

 SOMERS, N.Y., Oct. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- In a dramatic comeback, Pepsi- Cola Company sales have jumped 7 percent in the key summer months. Pepsi-Cola's sales growth in July and August was the best for that period in the last five years despite the highly publicized syringe hoax early in the season.
 Pepsi-Cola total case volume increased 7.3 percent in July and 6.8 percent in August versus a year ago. The growth rates include Pepsi's total beverage lineup, including such products as ready-to-drink teas and juices in addition to soft drinks. To put the strong growth in perspective, consider that overall soft drink industry sales edged up only 1.5 percent in 1992.
 "The syringe hoax -- with all of the noise and publicity surrounding it -- delayed us but didn't stop us," said Craig Weatherup, president and CEO, Pepsi-Cola North America. "We've spent 95 years overcoming obstacles. Our summer sales results are solid proof that today we are stronger than ever."
 Here's how Pepsi has thrived this summer:
 -- Alternative beverages: The company has turned in strong growth with its new products, including Lipton ready-to-drink teas and Ocean Spray single-serve juices and juice drinks. This summer, Lipton Original took over the leadership in the highly competitive ready-to- drink tea category with a 39 share in food stores. In just two years, Pepsi has become one of the world's largest alternative beverage companies.
 -- Core brands: Brand Pepsi turned in solid growth in August, up 5.4 percent in supermarkets, and has its highest forced preference score in its history. This year Mountain Dew is the fastest growing major trademark with year-to-date volume up 10 percent. In addition, Crystal Pepsi has reinvigorated the cola category and enjoyed popularity with teens. The brand has achieved 1.2 percent share of the $48 billion soft drink category in its first full year of distribution.
 -- Private label growth: Pepsi-Cola sales have remained strong through an avalanche of private label product introductions. Despite these introductions and heavier promotional activity, the number of households buying private label soft drinks has not increased in more than two years.
 -- Packaging and merchandising innovations: Innovative packaging concepts and new merchandising equipment has contributed to the company's solid performance. The one-liter Big Slam boosted single- serve sales in convenience stores this summer. New to the marketplace is The Cube, an innovative 24-can pack that is easy to handle and fits in the refrigerator. And merchandisers built for express lane checkout counters are driving impulse sales.
 These achievements helped the company rebound from the June syringe hoax. The tampering scare cost the company and its franchise bottlers an estimated $25 million in lost sales, increased marketing expenditures and employee man hours. Sales dipped about 6 percent in the two weeks of the hoax.
 Pepsi-Cola Company is headquartered in Somers, and is a division of PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE: PEP). Pepsi manufactures, markets and distributes Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Caffeine Free Pepsi, Caffeine Free Diet Pepsi, Crystal Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Slice, Mug Root Beer, Mug Cream Soda and other products.
 -0- 10/7/93
 /CONTACT: Gary A. Hemphill, 914-767-6672, or Amy Sherwood, 914-767-7225, both of Pepsi-Cola/
 (PEP)


CO: Pepsi-Cola Company ST: New York IN: FOD SU: SLS

CK-WB -- NY054 -- 9798 10/07/93 13:34 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 7, 1993
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