The new collaboration will start with the launch of 5% ABV Simply Spiked Lemonade this summer in the US. A variety pack will include Signature Lemonade, Strawberry Lemonade, Watermelon Lemonade and Blueberry Lemonade.
Category blurring in action: taking juice into alcohol
Simply is Coca-Cola’s second largest US brand after trademark Coca-Cola: representing a $1bn+ dollar brand which continues to grow. Simply can be found in 1 in every 2 American households, according to the company.
Now, it sees the opportunity to ‘mix the bold, great-tasting flavors of the Simply brand seamlessly with alcohol for cocktails, which inspired the RTD line-up’.
The flavored alcohol beverage has continued to grow year-over-year into a nearly $2bn segment, with the emphasis on full-flavored products and innovation, according to Coca-Cola.
“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,” said Dan White, Chief of New Revenue Streams, Coca-Cola North America Operating Unit.
“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.”
Molson Coors, meanwhile, sees the partnership as a way to expand its portfolio with products with a ‘compelling point of difference’: which it has been working on over the past two years such as Vizzy hard seltzer and ZOA energy drink.
“Now, we have a huge opportunity to leverage the power of Simply – a brand known for real juice and big flavor – to disrupt the full-flavor alcohol segment in a way that’s never been done before,” said Michelle St. Jacques, Molson Coors’ Chief Marketing Officer.
Simply Spiked Lemonade will be sold in slim-can 12pks as a variety pack, and 24oz standalone cans of select flavors.
The Coca‑Cola Company’s North America Operating Unit will sell beverage base to Molson Coors, which will produce, distribute and market the premium, ready-to-drink Simply Spiked Lemonade brand.
Coca-Cola makes more moves into alcohol
In September 2020, Coca-Cola and Molson Coors announced their agreement to launch Topo Chico Hard Seltzer, taking the Mexican sparkling water brand into the alcohol space with a launch in Europe, the US, and a number of other markets last year.
The companies say a successful first year has prompted further collaboration on Simply.
Earlier this month, Coca-Cola announced another move into alcohol with a partnership with Constellation Brands to launch Fresca Mixed, a line of ‘full-flavored’, spirit-based RTD cocktails in the US.
In a similar way, this partnership will take a key Coca-Cola brand (Fresca is a zero-calorie grapefruit citrus-flavored soft drink and cocktail mixer which is currently the fastest growing trademark in the company’s US portfolio) into the alcohol category. Fresca Mixed is also expected to launch later this year.