Sales 'sparkle' after Perrier promotion

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 21 August, 1996, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 21 August, 1996, 12:00am

Perrier has recorded improved sales in Hong Kong following a summer promotion, a company official says.

The French sparkling mineral water company spent $5 million on a travelling roadshow and television advertising campaign. The two-month promotion finishes next week.

Vincent Wan, managing director for Perrier Vittel Far East, said retail sales had risen by nearly 10 per cent and outlet sales - bars, restaurants and clubs - by up to 200 per cent.

Mr Wan said Perrier had an 85 per cent share of the sparkling mineral water market in the territory, where it sold 250 per cent more than in the United States.

'We are really competing with ourselves,' Mr Wan said. 'We want to continue to own that market but, more importantly, we want to expand that market.' The campaign's focus was consumers aged 16 to 24, an age group in which Perrier citrus-flavoured products were gaining in popularity.

'We noticed that young people were expressing a strong interest in Perrier and our retail sales reflected that so we felt it was important to get out and talk to them,' Mr Wan said.

'This campaign has brought a sense of excitement which is difficult to come by with a product like water.

'With this campaign, we are able to break the barrier, work with the [bar] people and let them know that you can have fun with Perrier.

'It was also a reflection that mineral water is gaining ground in Hong Kong.' Mr Wan said Hong Kong people consumed, on average, 32 litres of bottled water a year.

'The trend is that the distilled water people are continuing to trade down, with sales and discounts, while mineral water is trading up.

'People are willing to pay that little bit extra for quality products from imported sources.' Mr Wan said the company's 20-second television advertisements produced by FCB would be revived in December to capitalise on the holiday season.

Perrier reported US$3 billion in sales last year and has forecast 5 to 6 per cent growth this year.