As the owner of some of the world’s most iconic beverage brands, Coca-Cola works with near global name recognition in almost every market around the world. According to Khalil Younes, Executive Vice President of Marketing & New Businesses at The Coca-Cola Company in Japan, the secret of the company’s international longevity is down to two things: the company’s dedication to research and development – even today, just three people in the company know the full recipe for the original Coke – and its marketing strategy.
Coca-Cola has been operating in Japan for around 61 of its 128 years – but with such a wide variety of its brands in the market, the original Coca-Cola drink accounts for less than 20% of overall sales in the country. Bottled non-carbonated drinks including tea, coffee and fruit juices have a strong hold in the market as well.
Younes revealed that four of the company’s billion dollar brands originated in Japan – Aquarius, Georgia Coffee, Sokenbicha and I LOHAS. The company launched its first ever alcoholic drink in the Japanese market in May 2018 and released 100 different products there in 2016 alone.