K Vaitheeswaran, along with co-founder Sundeep Thakran is foraying into the beverages market in India.
K Vaitheeswaran, popularly known as the 'father of e-commerce in India' along with co-founder Sundeep Thakran is foraying into the beverages market in India with Again, a milk-based ready-to-drink offering.
The founders claim that Again is the only beverage range in India - maybe even the world - made with low-fat dairy (milk or yoghurt), real fruits, nuts, vegetables, and natural sweeteners. The product has zero refined sugar, no added preservatives, artificial flavours or colours and contains puree or paste and not juice or concentrate.
The drinks have been created to be stored at ambient temperatures without requiring refrigeration, allowing convenient, on-the-go use cases.
At a time when retail shelves are inundated with sugary, fizzy drinks and tasteless health drinks, Again is aimed at growing the tasty and healthy food trend in India. It is positioned as a pick-me-up for office meetings, a refreshing companion for the gym, a cool icebreaker at social gatherings, and mid-day snacking at work or home. The drinks are available in 200ml bottles and priced at ₹50. They have been launched at an introductory price of ₹39.
Speaking about the venture, K Vaitheeswaran, co-founder, Again Drinks, says, "We see a huge gap in the ready-to-drink beverage market in India. Right now, consumers are forced to choose between delicious and nutritious. Whether its consumers shopping at retail outlets, patrons eating out at restaurants or passengers at airports, we wonder why they can't have both?
"The high sugar content and preservatives as well as significant amounts of artificial ingredients in popular beverages, is disconcerting. Given the current scenario, it is of paramount importance that we provide nutritive food choices which are easily accessible and affordable without compromising on the taste factor. With Again, our endeavour is to do exactly that. And I have a feeling that this is going to be an exciting journey," Vaitheeswaran adds.
Four variants of Again have been pilot launched in select retail outlets in Bengaluru and online grocery stores. Shortly, the range will be available across retail chains in key cities. The brand offers two variants of the double-toned (low-fat) milk drink - almonds, cashews, dates; and strawberry, chocolate, jaggery. The two other variants are double-toned (low-fat) yoghurt drinks - Alphonso mango; and carrot, orange, banana.
Commenting on the brand's USP, Sundeep Thakran, co-founder, Again Drinks, says, "It has been an exciting challenge to create a range of beverages that rank high on nutrition as well as flavour. Instead of refined sugar, we have used honey and jaggery as healthy substitutes. Again drinks have 100 per cent natural ingredients, with the highest fruit/vegetable content, that too as puree and not juice or concentrate, as compared to any other beverage or dairy product in the market."
Vaitheeswaran and Thakran have been co-founders of India's first e-commerce company Fabmart.com (later rebranded to Indiaplaza.com) and India's first integrated online-to-offline retail company Fabmall (acquired and re-branded as the More chain of stores by the Aditya Birla Group; recently acquired by Amazon).
The two industry legends seem to be back in the game, this time they're all set to disrupt the beverage market with the launch of Again.