ATLANTA -- The Coca-Cola Bottling Company here has jumped into the bottled-water market with Dasani, a purified, non-carbonated mineral water, which will be available nationwide by the summer of 1999.
Dasani is Coca-Cola's first venture into the bottled water category in North America. According to a company press release, Coca-Cola currently markets a bottled-water brand called BonAqua in about 35 countries.
"Dasani provides us with an excellent water brand to complement our strong portfolio of carbonated soft drinks and non-carbonated beverages," said Frank Bifulco, vice president of marketing for bottle/can operations in the United States and Canada. "North America bottlers of Coca-Cola products can now offer their customers a bottled water brand from the Coca-Cola Company that delivers great taste and a unique consumer proposition."
Dasani will be packaged in a light blue plastic bottle and will be available in 20-ounce, single servings and multi-packs of six, 1-liter and 1.5-liter sizes. The suggested retail price will be at mid-range and not at a premium price.
The bottled water category is growing rapidly with consumers, raking in more than $4 billion for last year.
"We think it is the right time for us to go into this market," said Scott Jacobsen, spokesman for Coca-Cola. The company's main rival, the Pepsi-Cola Company, is already active in the bottled water category with its brand, Aquafina.
"For the past five years, Coca-Cola has done well with brands like Surge, Nestea, Citra, and Fruitopia. We've had continued success with these other brands and now it is time to focus on bottled water," Jacobsen said.