The Indian water brand Bisleri may launch on the US market, according to reports in the Indian press today.

"The Bisleri brand will be registered in the US soon. As a first step, we have sent Bisleri samples to the US to establish the fact that the water is being consumed by an active population. US laws stipulate that a foreign water brand must establish its usage first," said Ramesh Chauhan, chairman of Bisleri.

The water will be bottled by a third party in Belgium and marketed by US-based Mza Beverages. Chauhan sold Mza to Coke along with Thums Up, Limca, Gold Spot and Citra eight years ago, but retained the rights to produce and market the mango drink in the US markets.

"More than anything else, Bisleri's foray into the US will even out our distribution costs in the America," is how Chauhan explained his US strategy in the Indian press.

But other sources were unsure, more convinced that it was part of a wider plan to attract a foreign investor.

"Bisleri is trying to get its act together before it can actually attract a foreign buyer. It is closing down defunct companies and merging the active ones. It has also decided to name the merged entity, Bisleri In-ternational. And now it is planning to go overseas. All these only goes on to prove that the company wants to project itself in the interna-tional business circles as a company worth buying into," one source said.