Indulgence over 25 years

ANJALI PRAYAG | Updated on April 25, 2012 Published on April 25, 2012

Good Day man: Sunil Alagh, former Managing Director, Britannia Industries.— Bijoy Ghosh   -  Business Line



As Good Day celebrates its silver anniversary, here's the story of how the cookie has risen.

Good Day was born at a time when ‘indulgence' in biscuits was a little known treat. Twenty-five years ago, most of India was crunching into ‘functional' glucose biscuits at tea-time breaks and bit into ‘cream' biscuits on special occasions.

Spotting the gap, biscuit major Britannia stepped in, introducing Good Day and positioning it just above its ‘glucose' offering. Glucose biscuits offered just wheat, milk and sugar, while Good Day tempted consumers with butter and dry fruits. It also ensured that its richness and indulgence was ‘accessible' to the masses.

Birth of a cookie

Sunil Alagh, former Managing Director and CEO of Britannia Industries Ltd, the man who spearheaded the launch of the brand in 1986, says Good Day was born out of both hindsight and foresight.

In the indulgence category, his team launched two varieties of biscuits (Delite Orange and Coconut Crunchees), but received a tepid response as consumers found them ‘hard' to bite. “It led us to develop a softer cookie in the form of Good Day in October 1986,” he says, narrating the birth story of Good Day.

The brand is now the largest and the fastest growing for Britannia and is estimated to have a two-third market share in the indulgence segment valued at Rs 3,300 crore.

AC Nielsen ORG pegs Good Day as a Rs 1,500-crore brand. It is estimated to have daily sales of 365 tonnes that go into 3.8 million packs.

“It has the largest preference that any biscuit could have,” reiterates Shalini Degan who's the Category Director, Delight & Lifestyle, at Britannia Industries Ltd.

Good Day's progress over the years has been in line with the evolving needs of the country. “It first started with the butter variant that was considered indulgence 25 years ago, and moved to the next level with dry fruits (cashew and pista) and now the chocolate variant that people consider as indulgence,” she explains.

In sales terms, Good Day is the second largest biscuit brand in the country, next to Parle G, which clocked sales of Rs 2,000 crore last year.

Alagh says he and his team had estimated success for Good Day and it helped Britannia see healthy growth in turnover and margins. “The initial step change in growth came with the brand and packaging revamp in the late 1990s, when the ‘Eat Healthy, Think Better' campaign was launched in July 1997,” he points out.

However, the boom in the category (indulgence biscuits) was not anticipated then and has come about only in the last five years when growths of over 25 per cent per annum were seen, adds Alagh. In volume terms, the cookie segment has now expanded to a level of 3.75 lakh tonnes.

Alagh is of the view that growing disposable incomes and minimal competition also helped Britannia in growing brand Good Day. “It has been driven by a momentum of its own,” he feels.

Brand consultant Raghu Vishwanath, however, believes that Good Day has grown thanks to Britannia's continuing investment, both in terms of product innovation and promotion. But he has his doubts about the positioning of the brand.

“I really don't know if Indian consumers categorise Good Day as a cookie or an indulgence brand, although it has remained in their consideration set for a long time now,” says the Managing Director of brand consulting firm Vertebrand.

Alagh groups Kraft's Oreo, ITC's Choco Fills and the United Biscuits range in the truly indulgent biscuits segment. “Otherwise, variants of existing brands with a few ingredient changes are currently being misconstrued as “indulgence”.

Degan claims the difference is that Good Day is made with the best ingredients and expertise in the industry.

Buttered on both sides...

Alagh recounts how the brand name was selected purely on instinct. “Interestingly, it was not researched, but his team went on ‘gut feel' and hence the campaign ‘Have a Good Day'.

It was the first amongst many innovations the company followed, others being 50-50, Tiger and Maska-Chaska. These are strong brands in the Britannia portfolio even today, says Alagh.

In his opinion, Good Day as a brand is strong enough to extend to adjacent areas and its true potential is still to be tapped.

Degan describes Good Day as a brand that gives ‘unconditional delight.' Two generations have interacted with Good Day, both as provider and as receiver, and goes on to explain how the brand has fulfilled needs that were denied to people in an economic and cultural context: first it was butter, then it was dry fruits and the next chocolate.

“An eye on the ball and no compromise is what has helped Good Day's long innings while we have seen quite a few brands fall by the wayside,” says Arvind Singhal, Chairman of consulting firm Technopak Advisors.

Published on April 25, 2012
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor