What if Paper Boat’s decides to enter the European market?

This is an academic work developed  for the course Brand product and Commercialization at TUDelft.

The goal of this work was developing a brand proposition for a hypothetical scenario  in which Paper boat, a beloved brand from India, decides to enter the European market. During this process  I have carried a 4Cs analysis and a new Brand DNA proposition.

A 4Cs analysis

1. Company

Paper Boat is a brand of traditional Indian beverages and foods produced and marketed by Hector Beverages.  It is the first in its category (ethnic industrialized drinks) and it evokes nostalgia by providing consumers with the flavors of their childhood.

Although the company can not evoke nostalgia in Europe ( European consumers did not experience these traditional recipes during their childhood), it can evoke its cultural value.


The company keeps chemical preservatives out of the ingredient list, the drinks use only Indian traditional ingredients, which is coherent with the traditional recipes and addresses the basic functional benefits of its products. The consumer quickly recognizes the whole ingredients list in the label.



This is aligned with the simple aesthetics of the package design and the simple message “drinks and memories”. This coherence builds authenticity, reliability and emotional bonding. It reconnects the consumer with his childhood.



By keeping  coherence when communicating with its consumers and effectively using social media, it can fosters engagement and brand loyalty, a valuable ingredient for competitive advantage.

2. Context

As the world population continues to grow, especially in the cities, the need for accessing conveniently meals and beverages increases. However, consumers are  paying attention to the list of ingredients engaging in trends like the consumption of organic foods.

The European organic food marketgrew over 10% in 2015 (FIBL, 2017). The EU is implementing a new set of regulations on organic foods in 2020, which will require suppliers to change in their practices to meet these requirements. In addition, the required maximum residue levels regarding non-organic foods are becoming stricter. At the same time, the market for niche products, like exotic fruits, is growing.

Companies are being pressured to operate in a sustainable way and take responsibility for their suppliers. For example, European retailers and traders have teamed up in the Sustainability Initiative Fruit And Vegetables to make all imports 100% sustainable by 2020. 

The described scenario opens an excellent opportunity for Paper Boat in terms of communicating how the ingredients are produced and how they empower communities in India. This should be stressed as a company value. Paper Boat is no only faithful to the Indian cuisine, but also to the quality of life of its producers.

3. Competition

Paper Boat is not exactly a functional drink, not exactly a juice company either, therefore it faces competition in many ways. Competitors can be juice brands that have tropical fruits flavors, smoothies that convey a healthiness message by offering functional drinks and even ready-to-drink teas.

Exotic Blends

Companies like Innocent offer blends of fruits, tea and spices like ginger that can be appealing to consumers that look for a non mainstream flavor in a drink. Furthermore, they play with transparency to reinforce the image of something natural.



Some players, like Oatly play, with the package’s texture just like Paper boat does. The paper texture conveys a message of sustainability. In this way the message "Harmless for the environment = harmless for you" is conveyed.

Other companies play with the “squeeziness” of the package, to make it playful as Paper Boat does.



Smoothies sell health benefits with their drinks and communicate them in a reliable way., by keeping transparency and simplicity.

Finally the ready-to-drink teas are drinks that are often seeing as functional and, therefore, healthy. However, most competitors such as Lipton Iced tea, Pickwick and Arizona, communicate with the consumer in a very different way that Paper Boat does.

4. Consumer

Europeans millennials correspond to  24% of the European Union population (Pew, 2015). This generation distrusts institutions like governments and big corporations. Millennials seek for ethics within companies and they also are concerned about the environment and what they are consuming. 

Millennials are digital savvy and like to be reached by companies through social media if they offer some benefit. Platforms like Instagram, are used not only as social media but also to shop. They adopt new technologies easier then older generations. Due to the connection with the digital world and, therefore, easy access to information, incongruousness in companies are easily spotted.

Trends like mindfulness, wellness and a healthy lifestyle are still gaining momentum and are very appealing to them.
This adds to the fact that millenials value more experiences than products. In this sense, companies that focus on the experience are usually successful within this group. 

German millennials are considered to be the most adventurous in Europe regarding cooking and experiencing new “ethnic” flavors (Mintel, 2015) which make them a good group of consumers to introduce Paperboat in Europe.

The brand DNA

The brand DNA maintains the ethnicity of the brand, since the richness of traditional Indian recipes’ flavors is preserved. Paper Boat offers complexity in flavors, yet the brand keeps things simple and pure and above all, authentic.

 The list of ingredients is simple and natural like the message that the package conveys.
Paper Boat drinks also keeps the focus on the connection experience. In Europe the company does not evoke old memories, but it creates new ones when it invites the consumer to create awareness and fully enjoy the moment by experiencing all the richness of Paper Boat’s flavors unfolding at every sip.

A value proposition

For Millennials, Paper Boat offers drinks that are rich and exotic in flavor. It only uses natural and sustainable ingredients and gives people the pleasure to indulge the moment by reconnecting to their senses.
Each sip of Paper Boat offers unique sensations that create a unique experience.

From mindfulness

Mindfulness is focusing one’s awareness on the present moment.

To "Flavorfulness"

Flavorfulness is focusing one’s awareness on the palate sense. A key and traditional characteristic of Indian cuisine is presenting flavors that do not overlap, it is possible to notice different flavors at different moments in the same sip, and this requires awareness of the moment.
In Europe, instead of reconecting the consumer with his childhood it reconnects the consumer with his senses.