Monster Unleaded to Launch This Year

"Non-caffeinated energy drink" joins two Ultra line extensions

Steve Holtz, Editor in Chief, CSP Daily News

Monster energy

CORONA, Calif. -- Monster Beverage CEO Rodney Sacks confirmed Thursday that the company will launch a "non-caffeinated energy drink in the Monster line" in the United States later this year.

Monster Unleaded and two other line extensions--including a 7-Eleven convenience-store exclusive--are on tap for the coming months.

"We believe that Monster Unleaded will appeal to consumers ... who until now were not consumers of energy drink, as well as to consumers who would like to limit their daily consumption of caffeine but wish to increase the consumption of Monster, particularly later in the day or early evening," Sacks said during a conference call with investors on Thursday.

It's thought by many that no-caffeine beverages could expand energy drinks' reach to new demographics, particularly older men and to women in general.

Other line extensions will include additions to Monster's successful low- or zero-calorie Ultra line:

  • Ultra Sunrise is zero calories and has a citrus-based flavor. "[It's] a lighter-tasting, refreshing and easier-drinking energy drink, completely in line with the original Ultra White product," Sacks said.
  • Ultra Black is launching now as a summer promotion with 7-Eleven. "We're ... going to go through a test on a summer promotion with our Ultra Black, test that flavor. See how that flavor does and see how the product does," Sacks said. "And either that will be the line extension for next year or we'll have another one, which we have in test at the moment."

Asked if the Ultra Sunrise launch was Monster's effort to shoot more directly at carbonated soft drinks, Sacks said no.

"This product has got nothing to do with CSDs. ... It's got nothing to do with Mountain Dew," he said. "This product is going to be merchandised in the energy door with the other Ultra products. It is a citrus flavor, probably more aligned into an orange flavor. ... it's not designed to address Mountain Dew or Kickstart in any way."

Steve Holtz, CSP/Winsight By Steve Holtz, Editor in Chief, CSP Daily News
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