In a first for India’s leading active nutrition brand, Fast&Up announced their association with the three-time IPL champions Chennai Super Kings as official Nutrition Partner- Digital, for the upcoming season to be held in the UAE from 19 September – 10 November 2020.
Having already established itself as one of the leading sports & active nutrition brands which has re-imagined intelligent nutrition and dietary supplementation in the country within five years of its inception, this new historic partnership with the Chennai Super Kings is aimed at further broad basing the brand’s wide range of effervescent flagship products.
IPL is India’s biggest sporting event that is rightly said to be ‘India ka tyohaar’ and with this association Fast&Up aims to increase its brand footprint by associating with one of the most loved team and captain of all time!
Speaking about their association with the Chennai Super Kings, Vijayaraghavan Venugopal, CEO of Fast&Up said, “We, at Fast&Up, are delighted to have inked this historic partnership with MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings. Cricket is one of the most fondly celebrated sports in our country, and we are proud to have formed this association with a champion franchise in the Chennai Super Kings, who are filled with energetic and ambitious world-class athletes. It is both Chennai Super Kings and Fast&Up’s common goal to promote a healthy and nutritious lifestyle and with this association as the official Nutrition Partner-Digital, we are confident we will be able to continue on our path of fulfilling our objective.”
Speaking on the association, CSK CEO KS Viswanathan said, “We are excited to have active nutrition brand Fast&Up as our official Nutrition Partner- Digital for the upcoming season. Fast&Up is a trusted brand with a wide range of products that help boost health, immunity and fitness.”
In an exclusive chat with MediaNews4U Vijayaraghavan Venugopal, CEO of Fast&Up, spoke to us about the association, growth of Fast & Up and the way forward for the brand.
IPL was a no show this year, what made you tie-up Fast & Up with CSK?
Yes, I agree that IPL was a no show this year. At Fast&Up, we have been associated with cricket and IPL for the last three years and we have been supplying our products to all the teams. There was a natural alignment and IPL is going to be the biggest consumer movement in the country this year, especially with the COVID situation. This is a perfect fit for Fast&Up to be there since we are into fitness, nutrition, wellness, and immunity.
What is the kind of investment, will it be only for this season or will it continue to the next season as well?
We have always been focused on what investments we should be doing and going forward we will align ourselves. This is the first time we have been associated with the IPL in a very formal way. Therefore, I would just say it is going to be an interesting experience for us and we hope to continue into the next few years as well, but we would like to take it season by season.
What has been the business strategy for the brand, and have you been associated with other sports as well?
As a brand, we believe we have the right to exist in the active nutrition space, which involves customers across spectrums. For us, sports are one segment and fortunately, sports is something, which takes us to the masses in multiple ways. We have a range of products related to sports; we are active in sports, but we see it as a category within which fits in very well with our long-term plans.
When was Fast & Up launched and what has been your growth trajectory?
Fast&Up launched in 2015 in India and we complete five years in September this year. We have been in multiple countries including Italy and Switzerland. We export our products to more than 10 countries, we have made our mark in the US, and UK markets through Amazon. Every year we have had new associations and business growth. It has been an amazingly fast and quick growth trajectory. We also experimented with the fact that India is moving towards quality and healthy nutrition with a lot of focus coming into play from the government and consumer as well.
Fitness & Nutrition is seeing a huge growth in India today, how as a brand have you strategized your marketing initiatives?
We take it year by year and look at the stage of growth, whom we want to cater to, how many consumers we want to reach. We have been extremely focused in terms of where we want to invest in terms of marketing. We have always been associated with mass movements, which includes running. We have been strong on the digital side and have been active in different mediums. We are taking steps with traditional mediums when it comes to marketing which would suit a brand like us and which would suit the growing trends of the day. Covid has changed many things so we as a brand are also taking new initiatives very quickly so we leverage that and move forward fast.
Coming to IPL and your association with CSK how are you planning to promote this initiative?
CSK has been a pan India favourite. They have been multiple champions of the IPL with Dhoni who a legendary figure in sport is. Coming from Ranchi and being the thalla of Chennai, it fits in very well with Fast&Up as a brand, which has grown from small beginnings to where it is today. It resonates very well with what we want to do. We will align with the IPL franchisee in many ways. Some of them would be on the digital side and some on the community engagement side. The fact that we are supplying all the products to all the teams means that we are very well entrenched into this IPL and we hope to make sure the brand recall is as much as possible there. We also have a retail reach out in significant terms and we would want to leverage this retail association where we would have some brand activation as well.
With the lockdown in place more and more viewers are watching TV, would you be looking at spending money on TV or just digital?
This is a remarkably interesting question. We have been looking at data. We know people are going to watch the IPL. The lines between TV and digital are being blurred. It is no longer a traditional set where TV is different and digital is different. There is some amount of synergies- you have all sorts of digital platforms. We are looking at a strategy where we touch our audience in the best possible manner and it will be a split between TV and digital but having said that, digital will be slightly more than what TV is, for reasons well known.