Monster's New Mutant Citrus Soda Takes Aim At Mtn Dew

Posted On: 10/3/2016

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TAGS: Monster Beverage Corp., Monster Mutant drink, PepsiCo, Mountain Dew, citrus soda, Coca-Cola

Monster Beverage Corp., Monster Mutant drink CORONA, CA -- Energy drink maker Monster Beverage Corp. is expected to begin shipping a new concoction in an attempt to shake up PepsiCo's Mountain Dew. The Mountain Dew franchise is the longtime dominant player in the citrus CSD market.

Unveiled earlier this year at Monster's annual shareholder meeting, Mutant reportedly will be packaged in a visually menacing 20-fl.oz plastic bottle and appear in the c-store channel initially. The green-colored citrus-flavored soda, which will be priced at $1.99, contains 115mg. of caffeine per bottle, compared with Mountain Dew's 91mg. in the same volume.

Mountain Dew was created in 1940 in Tennessee by Barney and Ally Hartman. Today, the brand reportedly generates billions in annual sales for PepsiCo, in part because it lacks a strong competitor in the citrus category. It's the No. 3 soft drink behind Coke and Pepsi, holding an 8.5% market share of the CSD market, according to Beverage Digest.

The Mountain Dew line includes the original flavor, currently stylized as Mtn Dew, along with Mtn Dew Diet, Kickstart and the new Mtn Dew Black Label. Mountain Dew consumers are the most loyal across all of PepsiCo's brands.

Industry analysts don't expect Mutant to take a big chunk out of Mountain Dew's market share, but its higher caffeine dosage and slick packaging could appeal to teens and millennials.

Later this year, Monster also plans to introduce Monster Hydro, a bottled water energy drink.

In its 2016 second quarter, ended June 30, Monster reported gross sales of $945.8 million, compared with $789.9 million in the same period in 2015, a 19.7% increase. Coca-Cola Co., which owns a 16.7% stake in Monster, is the energy drink company's global distribution partner.