Although it is still the market leader, Gatorade has lost 5% market share compared to this time last year. Indra Nooyi says Gatorade’s recent decline in sales are a result of casual Gatorade drinkers choosing other beverage options instead of Gatorade. Nooyi defines these “casual” sports drinks consumers as users that buy it simply for the taste. In a second quarter earnings conference call, the PepsiCO CEO said, “Those users don’t really have a right to exist in the Gatorade world.” Nooyi also states that to regain lost share, the Gatorade business unit will maintain Gatorade prices while creating other products to capture the migrating Gatorade users.
One must wonder what type of additional products the company will introduce to keep these users as customers. Will it be a completely new product line, featuring a different brand name and beverage formula? Or will be it a release under the Gatorade umbrella?
BevWire’s recommendation is to release it under the Gatorade brand. This leverages on the sports drink’s brand stature, allowing consumers to more easily trust on the new drink. With other Gatorade product lines such as Fierce, X-Factor, G2, and others marketed as offering more vitamins for the user, this new drink can capitalize on the users that want less vitamins (those that simply buy it for the taste). To capture the entire spectrum of sports drinkers – casual and actual athletes – the brand’s product portfolio must reflect this as well. Let’s wait and see what PepsiCo plans to do – release additional products under the Gatorade brand name, or release a new product under some other brand name.