Local reports have suggested that Danone is looking to up its profile in Russia.

Business daily Kommersant said today (3 March) that the French-based company has set up a unit called Napitki, Russian for 'drinks', with a view to launching a water of the same name in the country.

The report cites Vadim Altaev, chief of the Union of Soft Drinks Producers in the country, saying that he has been approached by Danone and has been asked about the Russian mineral water market and the peculiarities of national laws concerning water production.

Both the Moscow and France offices of Danone would not provide the paper with comment, and no-one was available for comment in Paris when contacted by just-drinks today.

Danone is present in the Russian water market through Evian, which is distributed by PepsiCo in Russia, the paper noted.