The sports drink unit of Quaker Oats Co. last week unveiled its first caffeinated beverage. SunBolt will be positioned as a morning pick-me-up for adults rather than as a beverage for athletes.
The new drink and a Gatorade energy bar, both fruit-flavor, being quietly tested underscore a new push for the brand. Gatorbar, with 110 calories, extends Gatorade into food for the first time.
The new bar competes with Berkeley, Calif.-based Powerfoods' PowerBar, another low-fat, high-carbohydrate bar for active people.
The drink hits selected East Coast markets this summer and rolls national in the fall. It will be backed by a TV campaign from Jordan, McGrath, Case & Taylor, New York, but no budget was disclosed; Gatorade's primary agency is Bayer Bess Vanderwarker here. Sampling handled by Silverback Creative Corp., Wellesley, Mass., also supports.
With 58 grams of caffeine-as much as a cup of coffee-SunBolt is entering the relatively untapped morning beverage market, which Pepsi-Cola Co. failed to crack with Pepsi A.M.
Consumers "want high tech development of products that serve a certain very specific purpose," said Gatorade President Donald R. Uzzi about SunBolt.
Gatorade sales rose 8.6% last year, but the brand's sports drink share, once more than 90%, slipped to 82.6% against rivals like Coca-Cola Co.'s PowerAde and Pepsi-Cola's All Sport.