Continuous flat sales force Coca-Cola India to shuffle top management

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India's largest beverage giant Coca-Cola is going for a major shuffle in its top management for marketing, strategy, insights and operations.

The shuffle has been pushed by a year of flat sales and fall in its profitability. With these changes, the company wants both Coca-Cola and its bottling arm Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages (HCCB) to regain customer loyalty in the ongoing peak season for soft drinks.

The Atlanta-based giant has to be cautious about changes in the Indian market given that the country is its sixth largest market in terms of volume.
The changes began after Sumanta Dutta, VP (south west Asia) for five markets moved out after over two decades. Similarly, Coca-Cola marketing head Debabrata Mukherjee is also moving out of the key area of marketing. Mukherjee would now handle general management operations for South West Asia - a market that does not include India.

Marketing would now be headed by Vijay Parasuraman, who is coming back from China for his new role.

Sundeep Bajoria has joined as VP (strategy & insights) for the India and South West Asia business unit from the global finance team in Dubai.

Head of strategy and insights Asim Parekh will now head fruit and agriculture circular economy, while Shehnaz Gill has joined as head of operations for India after being the vice president and general manager at Coca-Cola New York.

"These were planned career moves to renew the talent pool in the leadership team and bring home grown talent back to the country and the region," said Ishteyaque Amjad, VP for public affairs & communications, Indian and South West Asia.

Talking of changes at HCCB, Sanjay Sharma, executive director of Supply Chain has called it quits.

There are rumors of other top officials from HCCB moving into Coca-Cola India; however, an HCCB spokesperson has denied them.

"Sanjay Sharma has decided to pursue a career in another industry. Everything else is purely speculative in nature. HCCB's employee turnover rate is one of the lowest in the sector," the HCCB spokesperson told ET .

(Image source Hungry Forever)
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