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Kangshifu steals march on Coke in global soft drinks struggle

Kangshifu Green Tea: The brand is gaining ground on Coke, Pepsi and Sprite and is now the world's No.4 soft drinks brand by volume, Canadean says

Tingyi's successful Chinese brand Kangshifu is gaining ground on Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Sprit in the bottle for world soft drinks domination, according to new Canadean research.

The top three soft drinks brands have kept their position for the last decade, and retain their volume sales lead, but Canadean says growth is soaring for local brands such as Tingyi Holdings' Kangshifu or 'Master Kong' (sold only in Asia), which is now the fourth best-selling global brand.

"The brand has seen amazing growth in recent years, rising from below 30 ten years ago to fifth position five years ago. Over the last five years, sales of Kangshifu have risen by over 6,000m liters with its iced tea drinks and packaged water products being particularly successful. Consumption of Kangshifu is now higher than the entire Russian soft drinks market," Canadean said, mining data from its Wisdom Analytics database.

Three other Chinese brands - Wahaha, Nongfushanquan and Uni-President - have also seen strong growth, with Nongfushanquan up 30%/year since 2008 and now 16th in the top 20 global soft drinks line up.

Nestlé Pure Life: 'A brand to watch'

In its local market, Canadean said Nongfushanquan is perceived as a good quality product, with a strong brand image for its packaged water.

Uni-President is growing strongly due to a milk iced tea product popular among younger consumers, while Wahaha has a strong distribution network - Canadean says its total brand volume is now greater than the total UK carbonates market.

Canadean also tips Nestlé Pure Life packaged water as "another brand to watch".

"The major country for Nestlé Pure Life is still the US, where it heads up the packaged water market due to its affordable price and national availability. However, Nestlé Pure Life is also benefiting from the expansion of its coverage in emerging markets including China and Indonesia," the research firm said.

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