Both Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have continued to make ground in the Indian bottled water market in the first two months of 2002 according to data published in India's Economic Times. However, the statistics suggested a more difficult time for market leader, Bisleri.

While the overall market grew by 30% in the first two months, Coca-Cola's Kinley brand's share of the market was reported to have grown by 16.4% to 26.7% while PepsiCo's Aquafina brand's share increased by 6.2% to 11%.

PepsiCo said that Aquafina was still only represented in around 60% of the designated area covered by these statistics which takes in 23 cities. The company is planning to grow its market share by opening a further four bottling plants bringing its total number in India to nine by the end of the year. Meanwhile, Coca-Cola said that it was confident of further growth and planned to increase capacity for Kinley in India.

The recent statistics suggest that the long-established market leader, Bisleri, has suffered as a result of competition from Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, with its share declining by 10.8% to 45.7%. However, Bisleri dismissed the data as inaccurate.

"This data is incorrect. On the contrary, Bisleri volumes have grown 30% in the first quarter over last quarter and this mostly includes retail packs," said Ramesh Chauhan. Chauhan said that Bisleri will be increasing capacity by building four new bottling plants, in Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Ah-medabad, which would further consolidate its leadership of the bottled water market.