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Rediff.com  » Business » Godfrey test-markets premium cigarette

Godfrey test-markets premium cigarette

November 02, 2006 12:33 IST

Why do most cigarettes have a yellow paper covering the filter? I gen, a new cigarette brand being test marketed by Godfrey Philips in Delhi, is trying to break the mould.

Following the global cigarette brands such as More and Sobranie Black Russian, which have adopted the colour brown, I gen is colouring the foil black.

For the company, this is a way to beat the advertising ban for tobacco products -- as the pack and cigarette generate word of mouth and noticeability. Even the pack is dressed in black, red and silver for the stronger version and off-white for the milder version.

Sunil Alagh, chairman, SKA Advisors, said, "The colour and texture of the pack is aimed at making the product look trendy and contemporary. The combination of black and silver is neither absolutely macho nor too feminine."

Even the contents on the pack talk to the youth with catch lines like 'delight your senses 24/7' or 'smoking is serious business' and so on. However, the mandatory statutory warning is prominent.

Ajit Suryanarayan, executive vice-president, GPI, said, "Consumers prefer products to be custom made. We have studied the behaviour and lifestyle of our target consumers before designing and packaging this brand. The response to the product has been encouraging. "

Priced at Rs 70 for a pack of 20 cigarette sticks, I gen is positioned in the premium category where brands such as Marlboro, Benson & Hedges and 555 sell in the price rage of Rs 70-80. I gen is soon to be launched in metros and mini-metros.

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Rashmi Hemrajani in Mumbai
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