It’s a great time to be an entrepreneur in India as consumer preferences have shifted from international staples and luxury names to boutique brands and home-grown labels. Now if you Make in India, there is an added brand value to your product. We now have many young labels in the F&B industry.
Niche mixers, Indian brews like Bira 91, cold-pressed juices from Antidote and Blue Tokai Coffee and the latest to join the list is premium Vodka brand Smoke.
Developed and created by a 25-year-old distributor of liquor in Delhi, the NV Group, is all set to launch Smoke. This home-grown brand is the brainchild of Varun Jain, director, marketing and new business development, who reveals this launch has been a decade-long dream.
Jain calls Smoke a “hyper-modern” or more like a “progressive Indian brand” of liquor. Sticking to the millennial ethos of less is more, the packaging is minimalistic and chic. The design partners are Brewhouse.
So what took so long to come out with the niche product? Jain, who is a certified ENA taster travelled across Europe to closely collaborate with master blenders and his team in India to try out a countless number of recipes.
He adds, “I always knew we had the production know-how and capacity to deliver world-class vodka. But finding a unique recipe took its time. Finally, I found a recipe that I knew was special.”
As all liquor brands need a surrogate one in order to promote and advertise their products, Varun, much in the style of Hollywood has decided to launch a fashion label and the first collection is in collaboration with Delhi based fashion designer Khanijo. The line of unisex streetwear is monochromatic.
“Khanijo was as he stands for the same ethos as us – a world free of gender barriers where freedom is celebrated and individuality is the norm,” adds Varun.
A 2018 Indian Alcohol Consumption Report stated a growth rate of 8.8 per cent overall in alcohol consumption, making India one of the largest consumers in the world.
There is also the success luxury Indian alcohol brands have had in the recent past. The youngster believes that SMOKE has no competition from any of Indian Manufactured Liquor vodka brands, and is a segment in itself as the most premium Indian vodka sells in between Rs 600-800 per bottle.
SMOKE Vodka is set to be India’s costliest and “coolest brand” and Varun states. The “New age vodka” beyond its differentiating will marketed through equally innovative consumer-oriented initiatives.