Energy drinks still buzzing in Europe

By Shane Starling

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Energy drinks Coca-cola

Category fatigue that has blighted other segments of the beverage industry such as bottled water and carbonated drinks, is not affecting energy drinks which continue to draw in more and more users.

Figures on the drinks scene in Western Europe compiled by beverage market analyst, Zenith International, reveal a market valued at €3.76m in 2007, with growth at 11 per cent over the previous year, for a total of 487m litres. Sales would broach 700m litres in 2012.

There are no signs of a slow-down as consumer acceptance of energy drinks builds. Zenith predicts growth of eight per cent for the next five years.

Multi-billion selling, category pioneer, Red Bull, will continue to dominate sales in Western Europe – it continues to hold about 60 per cent of the market – and Zenith gives no indication that this will change any time soon, despite increased competition.

Red Bull is sold in more than 140 countries and the slimline can format it pioneered remains the package of choice across all brands although Coke’s Relentless and others come in other shapes and varieties such as a 500ml can Relentless comes in.

Mainstream appeal

Coca-Cola’s Burn had overtaken Shark to take second place, with MBG International Premium Brands-owned Effect in third and Relentless the fifth highest seller.

“Intensifying competition, effective marketing support and increased consumer acceptance as well as loyalty have been key contributors to current growth,”​ said Zenith market intelligence director, Gary Roethenbaugh.

“Manufacturers have been extending distribution and developing more mainstream appeal, targeting a wider range of consumer groups. This has resulted in a shift of emphasis towards the retail channel.”

The top 10 brands accounted for 75 per cent of sales, Zenith found, with taurine and caffeine products making up 74 per cent of products.

The UK, Germany and Spain accounted for 56 per cent of West European volume, while France, which recently permitted taurine as an ingredient after banning it for many years, was the fastest growing market.

Ireland, Denmark and Spain also demonstrated rapid growth, albeit from varying volume levels. Ireland had the highest consumption per person at 7.7 litres, followed by Austria and Switzerland on 5.4 litres and 2.4 litres respectively.

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