Coca-Cola Co will launch Simply-branded alcoholic drinks in the United States this summer in partnership with beer giant Molson Coors Beverage Company, as the soda maker doubles down on its adult drinks portfolio.
Soft-drink makers, including Monster Beverage Corp and PepsiCo Inc, have been branching out to the alcohol space as traditional boundaries between the categories rapidly blur.
Coca-Cola launched an alcoholic version of its Topo Chico sparkling water along with Molson Coors about a year ago before tying up with Constellation Brands Inc to introduce Fresca-branded ready-to-drink cocktails.
“Over the past two years, we’ve seen success by shaking up existing categories with new brands that have clear, compelling points of difference, like Coca-Cola's Topo Chico Hard Seltzer, Vizzy Hard Seltzer and ZOA Energy Drink,” said Michelle St. Jacques, Molson Coors’ chief marketing officer.
"Now, we have a huge opportunity to leverage the power of Simply – a brand known for real juice and big flavour – to disrupt the full-flavour alcohol segment in a way that’s never been done before."
Molson Coors will launch the Simply Spiked Lemonade in multiple flavours this summer in a variety pack featuring 12 slim-cans, the Coors Light beer maker said.
The flavours will be inspired by some of Simply's best-selling non-alcoholic products, including strawberry lemonade, watermelon lemonade, blueberry lemonade and signature lemonade.
'A Thriving Relationship'
Daniel White, chief of new revenue streams, Coca-Cola North America operating unit, said, "The Coca-Cola Company and Molson Coors have a thriving relationship in North America. The proof is in the success of Topo Chico Hard Seltzer’s national expansion and the introduction of Topo Chico Ranch Water Hard Seltzer.
"With this momentum, we are excited to expand our relationship with products inspired by another one of our most valuable brands: Simply. We believe people will be excited to try this delicious beverage when it arrives on shelves later this year."
Simply, known for its juices, is Coca-Cola's second-largest US brand in terms of revenue after its eponymous line.