Rachit Vats

JWT rings Taco Bell as it readies for India launch

The Taco Bell brand will be unveiled at last in India in the middle of 2008 and JWT will handle its creative duties

US based Yum! Restaurants International, owners of the Pizza Hut and KFC brands, is finally going to introduce the Taco Bell brand in India. Though the exact timing of the launch is still uncertain, a spokesperson from Yum! claims mid-2008 should see Taco Bell here.

JWT rings Taco Bell as it readies for India launch
At present, Taco Bell is conducting a consumer research study to understand the Indian market and the customer palate. Earlier this month, the Mexican QSR (quick serve restaurant) chain called for a pitch, and Ogilvy and JWT were asked to make presentations. JWT has already been entrusted with Taco Bell’s launch duties. The development was confirmed to agencyfaqs! by Ashok Bajpai, general manager, Indian subcontinent, Taco Bell.
JWT rings Taco Bell as it readies for India launch
Ashok Bajpai
Bajpai says, “It may take a few more months to roll out the Taco Bell brand in India. The decision has already been taken and right now we are trying to get a hold on understanding the Indian consumer’s tastes. Taco Bell being the second largest QSR format, next only to McDonald’s, we expect to leverage its brand equity immensely. We have the right combination of tastes and the ability to offer something refreshing to this market.” Taco Bell will be rolled out in the major Indian cities initially.

Yum! Restaurants owns five brands globally: Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pizza Hut, All American, Long John Silver and Taco Bell. It entered India in 1994-95 with the launch of Pizza Hut and KFC. While Pizza Hut took off, KFC lagged behind. It was later re-launched in 2006, after a gap of seven years. In Asia, Taco Bell is present only in the Philippines and in Singapore. Pizza Hut is the major revenue earner for Yum! Restaurants in India, clocking close to 67 per cent of its entire turnover. The rest is earned by KFC. The expectations from the Taco Bell chain are high.

For the record, at present, JWT handles the creative duties for Pizza Hut, while Ogilvy is the custodian of the KFC brand. Taco Bell declined to comment on the marketing strategy for the Indian market.