www.zf.ro - Ultima actualizare 23:17
Primola chocolate producer re-enters coffee market
2 iun 2009
Supreme group, a major sweets producer domestically, is readying to launch Saga coffee on the market, about eight years after the sale of its coffee brands to Kraft Foods.
"We're entering the mainstream segment of the ground coffee market with Saga brand. This launch entails only marketing investments, as the current production capacities are sufficient," stated Cristian Stancu, a marketing officer with Supreme Chocolat.
Coffee processing is the first business Supreme owners, Jihad and Johnny Jabra brothers, developed in Romania in the early '90s. In 2001, after the business had reached turnover of around 7m euros, they sold the Nova Brasilia coffee brand to Kraft Foods US company, but continued to process the coffee for the new owners of the brand.
The contract sealed between Supreme and Kraft in 2001, still ongoing, banned the processor from entering the market with its own brand over a limited period of time, which has now expired, according to Cristian Stancu.
Supreme is throwing Saga into battle with Nova Brasilia, its former brand, as well as with Tchibo and Cafea Fortuna positioned on the middle-priced segment.
"I do not see a direct competition between Saga and Nova Brasilia because we see Nova Brasilia as being positioned on the low-price segment," says Stancu. On the other hand, Kraft representatives previously specified the brand was positioned on the same middle-priced segment.
Supreme processes coffee for an international retailer, too, under a private label system. This collaboration has allowed the producer to start coffee exports in the region. In early 2009, exports accounted for half of the coffee volumes processed in Supreme's facility in Bucharest. In 2007, Supreme Imex, the coffee processing company part of the group owned by Jabra brothers, reported 14.4m RON (4.3m euros) turnover.
"Our regaining the coffee market is an opportunity for us to expand our portfolio. We hope Saga launch will allow us to boost the company's sales this year, too. In Q1, we saw sales stall at the level of the same period of 2008," Stancu also said.
At this moment, Jabra brothers' biggest business is chocolate production. Supreme estimates it accounted for around 12-14% of the chocolate market last year with the three brands of its portfolio: Primola, Anidor and Novatini.