One day after he stormed the box office with Tiger Zinda Hai, his exciting and action-packed comeback film after the disastrous Tubelight in June, Salman Khan is reportedly being wooed to return as Coca-Cola India’s brand ambassador for its popular brand Thums Up. The cola giant realised that while using Ranveer Singh for its new variant Thums Up Charged (“packed with even more thunder”) might make the brand India’s most loved cola in 2018 – its 40th year, there was no replacement for Salman when it came to taking a product to the masses. Thums Up promotes an unique expression of masculinity that challenges consumers to believe that heroism is a choice.
Strangely, Salman replaced Akshay Kumar who had a ten-year-old association with Thums Up as the cola’s brand ambassador in 2012. He was earlier its poster boy until 2003 then Coca-Cola India decided to go in for change. Perhaps it was his career graph which registered an upswing after a series of blockbuster hits like Wanted, Ready, Dabangg, Bodyguard, Kick and Ek Tha Tiger that made the cola company approach Salman again. Then last year, it dropped Salman because he was committed to a TV show that happened to be sponsored by a rival brand that competed with Coca-Cola India. At that time it was believed that Salman’s contract was not renewed because he was 50 and the cola was seen as a young brand. Which paved the way for Ranveer Singh’s entry.
But now the cola giant is reportedly keen to get the mega star back as its brand ambassador for Thums Up and the buzz is that Coca-Cola India has approached Salman with a fresh contract. Says a trade source, “Apparently the cola brand has been sending Salman’s management team feelers as it feels his brand value is today at an all-time high and the debacle of Tubelight hasn’t stopped his meteoric rise. While his latest release Tiger Zinda Hai has taken the biggest opening of the year, the fact is Salman has been on a roll much before that and TZH is just the cherry on the icing.”
Salman was ranked as No. 1 on Forbes India’s 2017 list on estimates of entertainment-related earnings for celebrities with Rs 232.83 crore revenue earnings. The source adds, “Salman has various factors contributing to his increasing brand value. The enigma around his unpredictable personality is charismatic. While his total earnings may have come down from the previous year by about Rs 37 crore, he is endorsing many brands, from footwear to detergents, which got him back to the top spot as his brand value has been growing. He has an extremely hardcore, ever-increasing group of fans that is steadfast in their loyalty to their ‘bhai’, thus consolidating his position more in the film industry.”
Last but not the least, returning as host of Bigg Boss 11 has made Salman’s popularity with the public increase more. “Today almost every household can connect with his Weekend Ka Vaar wisdom while dealing with all the confusion in the BB House as he has everyone eating out of his hands. He is the only reason most people watch the show today. Salman stopped endorsing Thums Up because the main sponsor of Bigg Boss 11 was Parle Agro’s carbonated apple juice brand Appy Fizz. But now that Bigg Boss 11 is almost over, there is no reason why both Salman and Thums Up cannot go for a fresh contract is there?” the source asked.