As of November 2009, the Canadian enhanced water beverage market was around $50 million dollars, and nearly half of that was Glaceau Vitaminwater sales. Aquafina Plus controlled about 35%, and the remaining percentages was divided between Aquafina Flavor Splash, Dasani Essentials, Nestle Pure Life flavors, and the private label brands.
Some notable brand’s disappearing in 2010 include Dasani Flavors and Propel, with Dasani Essentials possibly being discontinued as well. Not that it’s a surprise, but the overall number of players in this category are mainly Glaceau Vitaminwater and Aquafina Plus. And Glaceau Vitaminwater has been gaining market share consistently since their release – while the enhanced water category itself grew nearly $20 million dollars, Glaceau Vitaminwater increased by close to $25 million dollars. Not only is Glaceau Vitaminwater growing this category, they are taking it away from its competitors. As a result, both Aquafina and Nestle have resorted to compete through pricing promotions, trying to limit their losses and temporary maintain their market share. In the end however, both Aquafina and Nestle may be perceived as inferior brands because of this. They will be selling more product but still make less money, and consumers will still choose Glaceau Vitaminwater because it’s the “premier” brand of enhanced water.
So as we go forward into 2010 (actually when BevWire posts this it will already be 2010), what will happen to the enhanced water category? BevWire sees the market stabilizing and continued growth, albeit at a slower rate. Barring any major player coming in the landscape won’t change too much. Sobe Lifewater does not have an expansion plans into Canada yet (maybe PepsiCo will run Sobe Lifewater and Aquafina Plus in the US, and just Aquafina Plus in Canada) so they aren’t a major factor. Smartwater is still slowly being launched and promoted across Canada, and they are still not listed at a majority of retail chains which limits their market impact.
Any one want to venture a guess of what might happen to this category in 2010?