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'Brand' Express to earn Rlys Rs 800-cr

After the Blue Billion and Mast Kurkure Express, trains sporting brand names are set to criss-cross the country.

business Updated: Apr 22, 2007 20:24 IST

After the Blue Billion and Mast Kurkure, trains sporting brand names are set to criss-cross the country under an initiative by the Railways to rake in profits.

The Railways have decided to name their trains after popular brands, which will get space for advertisements on railway charts, coach boards and even bed wraps offered in AC coaches. Also, space on the train's body will be used to sport the brand.

From Pepsi's Blue Billion Express prior to the World Cup to its current Mast Kurkure Express down south, Indian Railways seems to have hit the jackpot when it comes to increasing profits.

If top rail ministry sources are to be believed, the next stage of Laluism - brand trains - will chug along soon after the coming Parliament session.

As part of the initiative, three special summer trains under South Western Railways have been named after Kurkure, the snacks range owned by Pepsi's Frito-Lay India.

Though officials were tight-lipped about the revenue generated by Kurkure Express, they maintained that the railways planned to raise at least Rs 800 crore through the marketing initiative.

Buoyed by the success of Kurkure Express, senior railway officials have asked all railway zonal offices to shortlist trains that could be used for branding.

"The concept of Kurkure Express has been doing good. Hence, we now plan to extend the branding services to more trains as part of a larger plan to increase revenue without raising fares," a senior rail ministry official said.