Nestlé makes bold bet on Vertuoline, a big brother to Nespresso
Nestlé needs a new product that still has patent protection, as cheap knock-offs knock Nespresso from its perch
Zurich — The Nespresso coffee-capsule system has been derided as an expensive and environmentally unsound device that clutters up the kitchen counter. Nestlé says you should get a second one. The Swiss food giant is pushing a machine into Europe that uses the same principle as the original espresso maker touted by George Clooney, but with some notable differences: the pods are bigger to brew a larger cup, meaning they’re incompatible with existing Nespresso machines. But they’re also patent protected for many years, letting Nestlé lock in a market that has slipped from its control on the smaller pods competing with knock-off models. Nestlé has to make some bold steps if it wants to preserve its lead in the tumultuous coffee market, which is undergoing a dramatic transformation as new players like Coca-Cola muscle in and JAB Holding Co’s years-long takeover spree of java brands continues unabated. Nestlé has responded with some strategic moves of its own, buying the majority in Blue ...
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