Brands that Failed in India [Popular Brands]

. 6 min read
Brands that Failed in India [Popular Brands]

Top Brands That Failed In India

  1. The Indian market is considered to be a profit-making market for all kinds of goods and services.
  2. However, some popular brands were unable to make a mark on  Indian consumers.

The Biggest Brand Failures


  • Kingfisher is a premier and world-class airline founded by Vijay Mallaya with its base in Bangalore.
  • It had 400 flights operating each day.
  • Unfortunately, though, the airline was mired in political controversies that led to its downfall.
  • It also had to handle serious issues such as complaints from customers regarding staff misbehavior, financial and operational troubles, and general mismanagement of affairs.

Business Television In India

  1. Business Television in India was popularly known as Bloomberg TV India.
  2. It was an English news channel started by Business Broadcast News Private Limited.
  3. In August 2016, the management decided not to renew the channel license and suspended broadcasting operations.
  4. The reason - the channel had been tackling financial issues for months before they decided to shut it down.
  5. Reportedly, the management worked hard to overcome this situation but did not succeed.


  • This company came into existence in 2015.
  • It was hyperlocal milk and grocery delivery platform.
  • The company was engaged in selling a wide variety of products like milk and fruits.
  • The aim was to serve the basic, daily needs of people before 7 am.
  • The company believed that operations were strong.
  • The delivery cost was Rs 3, which appealed greatly to the users.
  • Despite effective marketing strategies, Doodhwala struggled to retain its existing customers when Big Basket started to expand its operations and capture markets across the country.
  • With the loss of its existing customers and a lack of adequate funds to run the show, Doodhwala eventually shut down its operations.

Aditya Birla Payments Bank

  1. It was founded on February 22, 2018.
  2. It was the fourth payments bank in India to receive RBI’s approval.
  3. It was a joint venture between Aditya Birla Nuevo and Idea Cellular Limited.
  4. Aditya Birla had a stake of 51% in the company, and the remaining 49% belonged to Idea Cellular Limited.
  5. On July 20, 2019, the bank announced that it was shutting down operations due to a change in the business and economic scenario that rendered its plan unviable.  
  6. The operating profit of the bank was negative and the operating expenses were high.
  7. There were many lending limitations too like investments being allowed only on Government securities, and the return on such investments was low.


  • Chevrolet wound down its India operations at the end of 2017.
  • Chevrolet found it difficult to stay afloat in the highly competitive Indian automobile market.
  • This came as a shock to many of its customers.

Bisleri Pop

  1. Bisleri is a popular brand in the bottled mineral water segment in India.
  2. Apart from mineral water, Bisleri had introduced other beverages like Pina Colada, Fonzo, Spice, and Limonata.
  3. These products did not appeal to the customers and Bisleri withdrew them from the Indian market.


  • DocTalk was an app launched in August 2016.
  • Through this app, doctors could communicate directly with patients.
  • DocTalk allowed patients to send messages to their doctors, store medical files, save prescribed medications, and ask for detailed prescriptions if needed.
  • Despite its useful features, doctors found it difficult to follow-up with their patients and maintain records.
  • It eventually saw a decline in user numbers and could not remain sustainable.


  1. This company launched its products in India but could not withstand the existing competition.
  2. It particularly struggled to compete with Adidas, a more widely accepted brand in India.

  • It was an aggregator of the car rental and taxi services in India founded by Aprameya Radhakrishna and Raghunandan G in June 2011.
  • They worked in collaboration with various taxi operators and offered them the technology to ensure that customers had easy access to safe and reliable car rides.
  • Due to the tough competition and bad market conditions, it was acquired by OLA in March 2015.
businessman and businesswoman seeing the fall in company's graph

Vodafone M-Pesa

  1. Vodafone M-Pesa was launched in the year 2013 for mobile money services in India.
  2. As per the stats shared by the Vodafone Group, M-Pesa’s revenue initially went up to20.7% approximately 0.75 billion.
  3. M-Pesa acquired more than 8.4 million customers in  India by the end of 2016.
  4. However, with the regulatory changes enforced in the telecommunications sector in India during that period, this unit was adversely affected.


  • It was India's first Cryptocurrency exchange company launched in 2017.
  • It indulged in crypto trading of digital assets.
  • According to the Koinex site, it had a million registered users and witnessed a trading volume of approximately three billion dollars in the initial phase.
  • Later, the founder of Koinex, Rahul Raj via a blog post on Medium disclosed that their operations were affected due to the delay by the government in defining the regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies trading.


Despite these brand failures, there is no doubt that the Indian market has seen many brands like Larsen & Turbo, Colorbar, La Opala, Van Heusen, etc, succeed in a highly competitive and tough environment.

Also Read:

1) Digital growth of brands over the years
2) 7 Different Types of Loans for Your Small Business
3) Best Tips For Marketing Your Brand.
4) What is IRCTC? Here's all you need to know

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Q. Why did some big brands fail to establish themselves in India?

Ans. Setting up operations in India is exciting but it comes with a lot of challenges. Since Indian consumers respond differently to different kinds of products and services, a new entrant cannot always predict the outcome.

Apple launched the iPhone in 2007, but they decided to open the first Apple store in India in 2015, almost 8 years later.

Q. What are the main reasons that businesses fail?

Ans. Major reasons for the failure of a business are:

  • Lack of planning
  • Insufficient funding
  • Low profits
  • Poor location
  • Personal use of business funds
  • Poor Financial management
  • Over expansion
  • Macroeconomic factors
  • Not meeting up the customer expectations

Q. Who should be your ideal target audience, and how will you interact with them?

Ans. You can decide your branding and communications strategy by defining your ideal customer profile outlining the persona of the buyer.

Q. Why is it important to understand the branding strategy of competitors?

Ans. You can improve or strengthen your branding strategy if you know what your competitors do.  You need to find out the answers to the following questions

  • Who are your competitors?
  • Why are consumers more interested in their product?
  • What is different about their strategy?