Lanka has a population of over 50 manufacturers in similar products. However CBL met these challenges as they had and still have many trusted consumers. Wickramage believes it is essential to understand the consumer properly and act accordingly, "we of course analyse the market, we see the requirement of the market and then develop the product therefore, there is little risk involved of the product failing in the market because we've already tested it with the consumer." This was the advantage that CBL had against competition.
CBL is able to face any challenge today with confidence, even internationally because of their efforts in not compromising the quality of their products and has even won ‘Product Brand Excellence' for seven years straight. "Our Deputy Marketing Manager, Theja Peiris has won ‘Brand Champion of the Year' for two consecutive years," points out Wickramage and believes that the company has a highly motivated team starting at sourcing of raw material to consumer product.
CBL as a Company lends its hands to CSR by way of giving back to the country and its people. "Education is the key area we have to look at because we believe that the future of this country lies in the quality of the people. If the people are not educated properly the consumer we have will not be a quality consumer. There's no point in the company improving the quality of their product range if the consumer perceptions are at a low level.
Market share plunged to 15 percent as the firm was unable to ensure adequate supplies but was now slowly recovering. Present market share is 28 percent, de Silva said.
About 70 percent of Maliban sales are in rural areas and the balance in urban markets.
De Silva said the biscuit market is getting bigger as the economy grows.
The current per capita consumption of biscuits in Sri Lanka was 2 – 3 kilos.
"However, as Sri Lanka develops this figure will increase to at least 10 kilos in the medium term, clearly demonstrating the potential for...