Part 15: Thums Up Story: Thums Up continues to taste the thunder

Previously, we had seen how Coca Cola tried to kill Parle brands soon after acquisition:

No matter how much Coca Cola tried to suppress Thums Up, it just refused to die, because it would mean handing over victory to Pepsi. Coca Cola swallowed its pride and “learnt its lesson”.
Coca Cola not only revived Thums Up but even gave it so much of importance that it used Thums Up as its “warrior” to fight against Pepsi. The company did not involve Coke into the battle at all and tried to keep it aloof, while it was Thums Up which fought against Pepsi. It  signed up a contract with Salman Khan (who was one of the earliest endorsers of Thums Up back in the 1980s) along with Sushmita Sen resulting in a campaign called “Grow up to Thums Up” which tried to portray Pepsi as a sweet drink for kids and Thums Up as a strong drink for grown up people. The campaign helped in not just reinforcing Thums Up as a macho drink but also helped the Coca Cola company snatch marketshare from Pepsi.
Some of the ads from “Grow up to Thums Up” campaign:

In the early 2000s, Coca Cola acknowledged the demand for Limca and in 2002, splashed the market with Limca ads to announce its arrival.

Recently, Coca Cola revealed its plans to revive Citra brand as well and target it for rural market at a slightly lower price.
The only brand which is still in cold storage now is Gold Spot and there are no signs of its revival yet. However, Thums Up is still the leader in cola segment and has been ruling the roost for more than 37 years and Limca has been quenching thirst for almost 43 years!! It stands as a testimony to the passion and dedication of Ramesh Chauhan in building such great Indian brands which could fight the onslaught of global brands and still emerge strong. The journey of these brands are no less than those adventurous young men in Thums Up commercials who put their heart and soul into achieving the impossible, to taste the thunder.

Ramesh Chauhan with Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw:
Ramesh Chauhan honored by The President of India, Zail Singh.

I hope you had an interesting time reading the story of Thums Up, Gold Spot & Limca. The purpose of narrating this story was to create awareness among youngsters about Indian entrepreneurs like Ramesh Chauhan and the journey of inspirational Indian brands over the decades. Also, during the narration, the reader would have come across insights which might help him/her into understanding how political situations (Emergency, Janata Party Govt, Liberalization etc) shaped up Indian industries.

Share these insights & stories with your friends. If you have any feedback or suggestion, please feel free to share it with me through the comments or e-mail or social media.


Chauhan who once sold thunder in a bottle:

Brand Thums Up:

Most trusted brands:

Chhibabhai & Gluco-Cola:

Chauhan says no regrets:

Chauhan interview:

Thums Up, Forever:

How does Thums Up keep stealing the thunder:

Coke in India, Thums Up?

Thums Up most expensive ad:

Coke swallows its pride:

Thums Up took me beyond advertising:

How Thums Up became the ruling cola of India:

The brand that refused to die:

The real thing:

Coke 20 years, A look back:

Thums Up grows up after attacking Pepsi:

Coca Cola is neglecting beautiful Limca:

Coca Cola revives Limca:

Can Coca Cola bottle up the chauhans:

The Cola wars:

New chill in the air:

Thunder Unbottled:

Inside Coca Cola:

Darwin’s Brands: