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ChaiTime for Chai Lovers Worldwide
Saturday, 13 January, 2007, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Naomi Lobo, Mumbai
rom being a simple spiced tea to a cool global refresher. Urban consumers in India are often averse to processing their masala at home. Despite Indian Chais growing popularity, good Indian Masala Chai is not conveniently available. Previously, there have been efforts to market masala chai tea bags, but none of these products could match the taste of a "freshly brewed" masala Chai. Then again, Chai preferences are different across India and these regional differences needs to be captured.

Indian Masala Chai is a growing market worldwide. Offered in the US and Europe even by Starbucks, Chai is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative to coffee. The market for various Masala Chais is estimated around $80 million abroad and about Rs. 150 crores in India and is growing at 15-20% annually.

Sapat International is the first Indian player with a major focus on this market and has entered with 'ChaiTime'.

With a 110-year legacy in Chai, Sapat is among the top 10-packaged tea Companies in India. The makers of Parivar Chai they have launched ChaiTime, a range of packaged Indian Masala Chais based on the most famous Chai tastes of India. Perfected by Celebrity Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, the all natural ChaiTime revives the Indian Chai tradition with added convenience of ready to brew Masala Chai. ChaiTimeTM is offered in four popular variants - Refreshing Lemongrass-Ginger, Spicy Masala, Energizing Ginger, and Aromatic Elaichi. These will be later followed up with more variants. ChaiTimeTM is available in 100g packs priced at Rs. 28/-; 50g packs at Rs. 14/- and a Variety Pack that delivers 16 servings at Rs. 12/-

Every ChaiTime Chai is based on a famous Indian recipe. "Hundreds of famous masala Chais across India were tasted. We then picked the best recipes and then further enhanced them. We knew we had to capture the real romance of Indian Masala Chai for the chai lover" says Sanjeev Kapoor.

In line with the original Chai tradition, ChaiTime has been launched as loose Chai and not as tea bags, to provide a complete Indian Chai experience.

Dr. Nikhil Joshi, Managing Director, Sapat International said, "We want to move Indian Masala Chai from being a product to being an experience. We want people worldwide to really enjoy Chai. As a first step in this direction, we felt the need to expand the choices available in Chais. Eventually a Chai for every mood is what we want to offer. Our tagline, Mood Kya Bolta Hai? nicely sums up this proposition" .

The initial expense for ChaiTimeTM was in crores. The Company has begun the distribution in the U.S. and is planning to enter the U.K. and the Gulf market. It is known for its innovations like - rural marketing through "communication agents" and its distinctive communication campaigns. Parivar Chai was quoted as the fastest growing tea brand in India in 2005. Today over 25 crore cups of Sapat Chai are enjoyed every month.
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