​​In the spotlight: Al Rabie shines bright with Tetra Pak® Reflect

The story in brief

Al Rabie, Tetra Pak’s biggest customer in the Greater Middle East and Africa, has scored a world first with the launch of its new sports drink, Vitality C, in Tetra Prisma® Aseptic 330 Sq DreamCap™ 26 with Tetra Pak® Reflect, our innovative new holographic packaging material. The aim? To create an eye-catching new product that will appeal to millennials – the dominant demographic in the target market, Saudi Arabia – and reverse the decline in demand for JNSD (Juice Nectar and Stilld Drinks). Al Rabie, which has long been a byword for quality and innovation in the region, is also looking to strengthen its brand equity and reinforce its reputation for embracing the new. 

A major player – and a pioneer

Founded in 1980, Al Rabie is one of Saudi Arabia’s leading juice producers, known for its wide range of flavours and, increasingly, for its growing portfolio of dairy and food products. Still 100% Saudi funded, the company has a strong track record of pioneering new products and embracing new technology and ways of working. Al Rabie products are available throughout Saudi Arabia, and across the Middle East and North Africa region and beyond.

Al Rabie at a glance

Headquarters: Riyadh
Employees: 1700
2017 turnover: US$350 million
Market share: 17% in total JNSD
Breakdown of business: 91% JNSD, 9% dairy
Business with Tetra Pak: 25 lines, mainly advanced format packages

Partners in innovation

Tetra Pak and Al Rabie have been working together since the company was first established. Their shared history of innovation includes the launch of Saudi Arabia’s first long-life ayran – a traditional yoghurt drink popular throughout the Middle East. More recently, Al Rabie was the first in the world to launch Tetra Brik® Aseptic 125 Slim Leaf, and the two companies have also collaborated on the launch in early 2018 of water in a carton, in partnership with regional ride-hailing app Careem.

A category in decline

Macro-economic factors including pressure on disposable income and the introduction of VAT, combined with a falling birth rate, contributed to a steep decline in demand for the JNSD category overall in 2016 and 2017. In the past year, though, there have been signs of recovery: there was a 6%+ increase in volumes sold in 2018 with carton packages – predominantly made by Tetra Pak – playing a major role.

Focus on millennials

Consumer research carried out in 2017 pointed to an exciting opportunity to target millennials – the region’s dominant demographic group. The findings identified high demand among this group for products that could be consumed on the go, and that remaining hydrated throughout the day was a priority. There was a clear gap in the market for a convenient, thirst-quenching product in an innovative package that would appeal to these young, trend-conscious consumers and reinforce both Al Rabie’s brand equity and its reputation as an innovative producer.

The perfect combination

Together, Al Rabie and Tetra Pak worked to come up with perfect combination of product and package. Vitality C, a fruit-flavoured sports drink with added Vitamin C, was formulated to meet millennial demand for a healthy source of hydration and will be sold alongside energy drinks and carbonated soft drinks – a new area for Al Rabie. The price point – 20% above the market average – positions this as a premium product. Easy to hold and drink from, Tetra Prisma Aseptic 330 Square DreamCap ticked all the boxes for on-the-go consumption with its excellent functionality, and also helped differentiate the product on the shelf. But the real innovation is the use of Tetra Pak Reflect. Part of the new Tetra Pak® Artistry suite of packaging material effects, Tetra Pak Reflect offers an eye-catching holographic effect that really helps products to stand out from the competition. Better still, the new effects can be deployed without the need to switch to a new format or invest in new equipment. This is the first time this package has been combined with the new packaging material: an exciting opportunity for Al Rabie to claim a genuine world exclusive.

A high profile launch

Vitality C was launched at Gulfood Manufacturing 2018, held in Dubai in November. Al Rabie plans to introduce the product to the market through point of sales materials and sampling, and a social media campaign which focuses on the opportunities Tetra Pak Reflect creates for brands to express themselves, and how the packages ‘leap’ off the shelves to grab consumer attention.

“Tetra Pak® Reflect is a great innovation; with the holographic packs, we have the chance to create an added ‘wow’ effect, amazing consumers and giving us an edge over our competitors. This has actually opened new horizons for us to personalise our packs without the need to change formats, size, or designs. We’re all on a learning curve now, finding out how we can further benefit from this packaging innovation.” Ghassan Majdali Deputy Chief Commercial Officer, Al Rabie 

Al Rabie Vitatlity C package.