Headlines have been made recently about Bisleri International, one of the top bottled water brands in India, due to a business deal that was not realized. It was reported that Tata Consumer Products Limited (TCPL) had been in talks to acquire Bisleri, but the company’s founder and chairman, Ramesh Chauhan, confirmed that the business would not be sold. Instead, operations will be taken over by Jayanti Chauhan, the vice chairperson of Bisleri International, along with a professional team.
Jayanti Chauhan is an Indian businesswoman and the only daughter of Ramesh Chauhan, who pioneered the Indian packaged water business with Bisleri. According to her profile on Bisleri’s website, most of her childhood was spent in Delhi, Bombay, and New York. She attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles to study Product Development and later pursued fashion styling at the Istituto Marangoni Milano. In addition, qualifications in Fashion Styling and Photography were obtained from the London College of Fashion, and a degree in Arabic from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London was earned.
The Bisleri journey of Jayanti Chauhan began at the age of 24, under the guidance of her father. The Delhi office was initially taken over by her, where she started off at the grassroots level. This involved renovating the factory and working on automating various processes. Restructuring departments such as HR, sales, and marketing was also part of her responsibility to build stronger teams.
In 2011, the Mumbai office was taken over by Jayanti Chauhan, who brought a fresh perspective to the business with extensive global exposure. In her present capacity, new product development is being worked on while also aggressively streamlining the operations of Bisleri Mineral Water, Vedica Natural Mineral Water from the Himalayas, fizzy fruit drinks, and Bisleri hand purifier. In addition, key insights are provided in marketing, branding, advertising and communication development at Bisleri. According to the Bisleri website, “Bisleri’s new brand image and growing portfolio” have been the driving force behind Jayanti Chauhan.
Bisleri, originally an Italian alcohol remedy drink created by 19th-century inventor Felice Bisleri, was introduced to India in 1965 by Italian doctor Cesari Rossi and Indian businessman Khushroo Suntook, who set up a factory in Thane. Initially, it was sold only in luxury hotels and restaurants in Mumbai in glass bottles in two varieties – bubbly and still. In 1969, the Jayantilal Chauhan family of Parle Group acquired the struggling Bisleri brand, which was looking to exit the Indian market, for ₹4 lahks (about US$50,000 then).
Ramesh Chauhan, the founder and chairman of Bisleri International, is a renowned entrepreneur who has played a pivotal role in the development of the Indian soft drink industry. In the 1970s, Limca, a lemon and lime-flavoured carbonated soft drink became an instant success, was launched by him. He later introduced Thums Up, which became the most popular cola brand in India. In 1993, he sold his soft drink brands to Coca-Cola but retained Bisleri, which has since grown to become a leading brand in the Indian bottled water market.
In conclusion, the recent news of Tata Consumer Products Limited’s failed attempt to acquire Bisleri has put the spotlight on Jayanti Chauhan, who will now be leading the company’s operations.