Juices and non-carbonated fruit drinks account for 14% of total CzechoSlovak consumption, and this market has grown by 9% year to year. Two family companies, still owned by their founders, have now joined their forces to respond to this growing demand. From January of next year the Kofola Group will become the exclusive distributor for Rauch products in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. This will make the Kofola Group a partner with the most complex portfolio in the CzechoSlovak soft drinks market.
From January of next year, the Kofola Group is entering another growing market segment, adding to its portfolio the popular branded juices, nectars, non-carbonated fruit drinks, ice teas, iced coffees and isotonic drinks of the famous brands Rauch Happy Day, Ice tea, Bravo, Nativa, Cafemio, Isotonic and Yippy. An agreement has been made for the three strongest segments: restaurants, retail and the segment of impulse purchases, e.g. at petrol stations.
Jűrgen Rauch, Rauch’s general manager, says about the cooperation with the Kofola Group: “Kofola is one of the biggest innovators and one of the most successful brands in the market. So we are happy about the upcoming close cooperation. We can see a lot of synergies in our joint future. Our premium products will now get to our custommers with a high-level service. Like Rauch, Kofola is a family company built on strong foundations, which is the key factor for us. This is also the reason why Kofola is an ideal partner for joint long-term and successful growth.”
“Rauch is one of the strongest brands in the European drinks market,” says Jannis Samaras, general manager of the Kofola Group, and continues: „The company has an amazing story and, among other things, is behind the growing success of ice tea and fruit juices. We share the same values: emphasis on brands, healthier drinks, innovation, being local, and maximum focus on customers and end consumers. This is why our cooperation makes a lot of sense to us.”
This business will increase the yearly turnover of the Kofola Group by CZK 450 million, accounting for approximately 10% of the Group’s turnover in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. And, what is more important, by taking this step, the Kofola Group is becoming a partner with the most comprehensive and high-quality portfolio of soft drinks in the CzechoSlovak market.
Jiří Vlasák, the Group’s marketing director, confirms the orientation of the Kofola Group not only as the manufacturer of healthier drinks, but also as a strong distribution partner. “We have gone a long way in the past four years. In our growth, both organic and through acquisitions, we have focused on having a complete portfolio of non-alcoholic drinks for the CzechoSlovak market, consumers and customers. It is also thanks to this cooperation that we have succeeded.”
Jiří Vlasák’s words are evidenced by the announced acquisitions and innovations of the Kofola Group over the past four years. In 2010 the Group bought Semtex, and the following year started the Hot Fill line for preservative-free drinks. In 2012 Kofola entered the fresh juice market by buying UGO bars, and started producing pascalised fresh juices. In 2013 the portfolio was further expanded; the Group became the distributor for Evian, Badoit and Vincentka. And the company confirms that this is not the end. In Slovenia, the Group has recently submitted an offer, together with the local family company P&P, to buy the traditional mineral water brand Radenska.