Nestle plans to capture India's fast-growing breakfast cereals market

Years after plummeting to zero sales during the crisis in 2015, Nestlé India’s said its noodle brand Maggi has attained market share of over 60 per cent. While its revenue share in the instant noodles market remains less than what it was in early-2015, it is now generating similar revenue for the firm. During 2014, Maggi noodles raked in over Rs 26 billion for the Swiss F&B major in India. However, its volume uptake remains nearly 10 per cent lower than pre-ban levels, he said.

Nestlé is now putting its portfolio at the forefront to capture the country’s fast-growing breakfast market. The firm said its products such as Milo, Nesplus cereals, yogurt, Nestlé A+ milk, Nescafé and Maggi Masala Oats are catering to consumers looking for healthy breakfast. 

The move comes in the wake of Nestlé’s new strategy to grow its volume uptake across categories to hedge against crises similar to the Maggi fiasco. During the time, prepared dishes and cooking aids (the category represented by Maggi brand of products) used to be the only growing category in its portfolio. In 2017, Nestlé managed to grow all its four product categories — first time since 2009.

“Nestlé now becomes a breakfast company. Not just Nesplus, the breakfast cereals that we launched last month, coffee, yogurt, oats noodles or milk can be considered as breakfast items," Suresh Narayanan, chairman and managing director of Nestlé India, said on Monday.

While two key brands, Horlicks and Complan, are up for grabs, Narayanan said: “So far we have grown through organic route and there is strong organic growth opportunities still left. But, if there is an interesting and manageable opportunity that fits into the company's long-term growth strategy, we'll certainly evaluate.”

According to market research firm Euromonitor International, India's breakfast cereal market is projected to touch Rs 26.1 billion by 2020, from Rs 14.4 billion in 2015. The local breakfast cereal market is dominated by Kellogg's, with more than 30 per cent share.