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Bottled water could become another oil industry
The Indian bottled water market is likely to touch Rs 10, 000 crore in current fiscal 2012-13, as per IKON Marketing Consultant's latest research report 'The Indian Bottled Water Market: Unveiling its Thirst'.

THE INDIAN bottled water industry was virtually stagnant until 1991, when the demand for bottled water was less than two million cases a year and consuming bottled water was considered a luxury. The rise of industry began with the economic liberalization process in 1991 and since then it has not looked back.

Currently the Indian bottled water market is growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 19%, worth around Rs. 8,000 crore and is likely to touch Rs 10,000 crore in current fiscal 2012-13, as per IKON Marketing Consultant’s latest research report “The Indian Bottled Water Market: Unveiling its Thirst”.

Though the market regulated, both organized and unorganized players share it. The organized players include national brands having pan India presence worth around Rs 4000 crore, and the region specific local brands have licensed manufacturing facilities but serving into region specific market worth around Rs 2400 crore. Whereas the unorganized players are operating locally, manufacturing without license, even just doing the refilling at homes usually in bulk and pouch packing have turnover of around Rs 1600 crore. Currently 80% of market is in the hands of organized players whereas 20% market is in the hands of unorganized players.

In terms of Urban Rural market segments, 84% of the market occupied by urban and 16% occupied by Semi Urban & Rural market. In both the segments, the small pack (packing below 5 litres) rules the market. However, Bulk pack (more than 5 liter) is gaining grounds faster by acquiring almost 44% market share. Rising trend of bulk water consumption in homes and institutional segments will pave the way for bulk water pack to acquire half of the total bottled water market within next 4-5 years.

Consuming bottled water in India is become necessity now. The Indian consumer perceives bottled water as safe to consume, worth to spend on it and less of brand loyal. Interestingly South India is the biggest consumer of bottled water representing more than 50% the total market due to water-starved areas.

As per IKON’s estimates, there are more than 12000 unregistered plants in India contributing 20% of market share. On the rivalry part, Bisleri continues to hold leading position by having 36 per cent of the market share among the national players. Kinley and Aquafina are fast catching up, with Kinley holding 25 per cent and Aquafina approximately 15 per cent. Parle Agro’s Bailley is holding 6 per cent share among the national players. The rest includes other organized brands such as Kingfisher, Oxyrich, Mcdowells No. 1 etc.

The future market potential will be harnessed by leading players with the increase in the number of high-end consumers. According to IKON’s estimates, the market is likely to be worth Rs 15,000 Cr within next 3-4 years and it can be more than fourfold of the current size at the end of current decade provided the market maintains the same growth momentum.

Witnessing burgeoning growth, the industry is going to be the next oil industry in India due to mounting pressure of increasing population and climate change resulting in increased scarcity of water, inadequate sources of safe drinking water supply, changing lifestyle leading to increased stress on natural resources.

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