Sports, Energy Drink-Contenders Punch it Up

While Gatorade still enjoys a mammoth 80-plus share in the bottled sports drink category, other entries continue to hang in there. An increasingly active consumer base, combined with the maturation of the category’s credibility, has made it a profitable place to be … even for those bringing up the rear.
Seven sublines of Gatorade now exist beyond the original flavors (Lemon Lime, Orange, Fruit Punch), which remain the biggest sellers. Frost, Fierce, X Factor, All Stars, Ice, Xtremo! and the newest addition, Endurance Formula, all cater to different preferences. Gatorade Endurance Formula, for example, contains twice the sodium (200 mg.) and three times the potassium (90 mg.) of regular Gatorade as well as chloride, calcium and magnesium. The new formula is designed to replace the fluids and electrolytes lost in sweat during longer, more intense activities such as all-day tournaments or training for marathons.
Global functional drink sales
(millions of dollars)
Subsector 2004 Forecast
Functional drinks $24,943.9 $27,473.7
Sports drinks $15,368.3 $16,683.2
Energy drinks $8,774.4 $9,944.9
Elixirs $801.2 $845.6
Source: Euromonitor International, 2005
Gatorade’s nearest competitor, Powerade, is concentrating on its own success by innovation. The brand has been growing robustly for the past several years and saw a 17 percent increase in sales this year. Powerade is now leveraging its relationship with the NBA’s LeBron James, and has introduced Flava 23, the first sports drink actually designed by a superstar athlete, and the first to be launched in conjunction with a related comic book.
Like sports drinks, the energy drink category is dominated by one product – Red Bull – but that hasn’t stopped smaller companies from grabbing their share of the remaining half. Innovators and mavericks alike have had success in this category, with high profit margins making it an attractive proposition.
Top energy drinks by brand
Brand Dollar Sales % Change Vs. Prior Year Market Share % Change Vs. Prior Year
Red Bull $192,954,700 67.3 57.7 -1.2
Rockstar $30,352,410 105.8 9.1 1.5
Monster Energy $26,137,550 206.9 7.8 3.5
Sobe Adrenaline Rush $18,249,200 31.1 5.5 -1.7
AMP $17,084,970 31.8 5.1 -1.5
Sobe No Fear $13,352,710 91.7 4.0 0.4
Full Throttle $8,886,300 NA 2.7 2.7
Hansen’s Energy $2,252,797 -37.3 0.7 -1.2
Hansen’s Lost Energy $2,184,804 623.8 0.7 0.5
Rip It $1,803,258 NA 0.5 0.5
Category Total $334,742,800 70.3
Source: Information Resources Inc., Total food, drug and mass merchandise (excluding Wal-Mart) for the 52 weeks ending June 12, 2005
Effective May 31, Coca-Cola North America and Coca-Cola Enterprises have taken on distribution rights for Rockstar Energy Drink. The cola companies will carry the product in most of the United States and Canada, with the exception of the West, Northern California and the Northwest, where Rockstar will maintain its current contracts. Under the agreement, Russ Weiner, Rockstar Inc.’s president and chief executive officer, will retain brand ownership. Coca-Cola and CCE will share profits on Rockstar, but the companies aren’t disclosing the details.  
Rockstar expanded its energy drink selection this year by adding a 24-ounce Diet and Original Rockstar to its 16-ounce and 8.4-ounce sizes. Also per the distribution agreement, Rockstar will be removing Rockstar Cola from the CCE distribution territories.
Another top contender is Hansen, with myriad product offerings including Monster, Lost and Enerade. Lost Energy Drink, which launched last year, offered an option for younger consumers who were missed by other energy drinks. It teamed with the surfing industry’s Lost International LLC to license the name, and decorated the can with art that is identified with the surf and skate cultures. In 2004, Hansen also introduced four-packs of Monster Energy drinks including a Lo-Carb version, and toward year end, launched new Monster Energy Assault energy drink in 16-ounce camouflage cans.
In December 2004, Hansen launched a new non-carbonated energy juice under the Rumba brand name in 16-ounce cans. Rumba Energy Juice is a 100 percent juice product that targets male and female morning beverage consumers and is positioned as a substitute for coffee, caffeinated sodas and 100 percent orange or other juices. BI
Top bottled sports drinks by brand
Brand Dollar Sales % Change Vs. Prior Year Market Share % Change Vs. Prior Year
Gatorade $562,991,300 8.8 47.5 -1.4
Powerade $169,898,770 17.1 14.3 0.6
Gatorade Frost $122,919,700 -0.5 10.4 -1.3
Gatorade Fierce $96,230,170 2.1 8.1 -0.8
Gatorade X Factor $80,169,440 241.2 6.8 4.5
Gatorade All Stars $73,958,870 35.0 6.2 1.1
Gatorade Ice $40,098,760 -43.3 3.4 -3.3
Gatorade Xtremo $23,006,310 24.9 1.9 0.2
Private Label $7,120,344 -10.1 0.6 -0.1
Gatorade Endurance Formula $4,842,265 NA 0.4 0.4
Category Total $1,186,059,000 12.0    
Source: Information Resources Inc., Total food, drug and mass merchandise (excluding Wal-Mart) for the 52 weeks ending June 12, 2005