Zesta Tea Marks 25 Years of Brewing Success in the Sri Lankan Tea Industry

Zesta Tea, a renowned flagship brand under Sunshine Consumer Lanka and Sri Lanka’s first brand to launch branded, export-quality tea for local tea lovers, recently marked its 25th anniversary by commemorating a legacy of quality, flavor and unmatched excellence in Sri Lanka’s tea industry. Held on the 17th of January 2024, the celebratory event brought together employees from Zesta and leadership of Sunshine Holdings PLC, as they marked a significant milestone in the brand’s journey.

Since its inception, Zesta has been synonymous with innovation, sophistication and an unwavering commitment to provide premium-quality tea to the Sri Lankan market. Emerging as a disruptor in 1998, Zesta challenged the prevailing notion that the finest teas were exclusively reserved for international markets and was the first to introduce a distinctive blend of 100% Broken Orange Pekoe Fannings (BOPF) to Sri Lankans. The brand’s visionary promise to provide Sri Lankans with the best quality tea laid the foundation in its journey to becoming a beloved household name, breaking away from conventions with bold communication strategies that won the hearts and minds of its consumers.

Commenting on the milestone, Shyam Sathasivam, Group Chief Executive Officer – Sunshine Holdings PLC stated, “I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has contributed to this success, as we celebrate a remarkable 25-year journey. This milestone is made possible due to the unwavering support from our passionate teams, loyal consumers and the unmatched leadership of Mr. Vish Govindasamy, who spearheaded the launch of Zesta in 1998 and continues to guide the brand to reach newer heights.”

He further added, “The future of Zesta holds exciting prospects as we aspire to uplift Sri Lanka’s tea industry with continuous innovation and unwavering commitment. Together, we look forward to shaping the next chapter of Zesta’s legacy and further enrich the lives of tea enthusiasts, locally and internationally.”

Over 25 years, the renowned tea brand marked numerous pivotal moments. By emphasizing the exceptional quality of its BOPF blend, Zesta witnessed increased sales and strengthened consumer loyalty throughout its journey. Furthermore, the brand secured the Global Shangri-La chain account in 2016 and expanded its portfolio in 2022, catering to dynamic consumer preferences by introducing its Wellness Range and Zesta Red.

These innovations stand a testament to the brand’s promise to make high quality tea more accessible, further highlighting its adaptability and commitment to stay ahead of industry trends. As the brand enters the next chapter, it remains dedicated to redefining the art of brewing perfection and providing an unparalleled Zesta experience for consumers locally and globally.

From left: Sunshine Holdings Group CEO Shyam Sathasivam, Chairman Amal Cabraal, Deputy Chairman Vish Govindasamy and Sunshine Consumer Lanka Director Lalith Ramanayake cutting the ceremonial 25th anniversary cake

( Top management of Sunshine Consumer Lanka Limited )

About Sunshine Consumer

From its modest beginnings 25 years ago, Sunshine Holdings PLC’s consumer segment has now grown into one of the top players in the FMCG sector of the country. Consisting of the largest branded tea company in the country with a sub segment leadership in the hard-boiled candy category, the sector boasts an annual turnover of Rs. 19 Bn.

The three tea brands Zesta, Watawala and Ran Kahata sell exceptionally well in their respective segments while 25+ products including Daintee (toffees and chocos), Milady (candies) and Xtra (lozenges and gums) of the recently acquired Daintee Ltd. are among some of the most popular confectionary brands in the country, with more than 90% penetration across the entire grocery channel.

Sunshine Tea (Pvt) Ltd., fully acquired by the Group in 2022, serves as Sunshine Holdings’ export arm and is consistently ranked among the top exporters of high-end Ceylon Tea. The Company exports over 200 varieties of the finest teas grown in the island, including the flagship brand of the group Zesta and three other prominent brands of its own, namely AvanTea, Gordon Frazer and Teazup to an exclusive clientele scattered over 40 countries, earning foreign exchange to the country.

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