Thursday 2 February 2012

Poland - a dynamic powerhouse for energy drinks

Lotos Dynamic Energy Drink
Energy drinks have for some time been associated with extreme sports including rally car racing and Formula 1 motor sports so it comes as no surprise that Polish fuel retailer Lotos has started selling its own-brand energy drink, Dynamic.

Fuel retailers now see a cash cow when previously they saw only Red Bull. Whilst the leader charges ahead with category sector sales topping 15%, the Red Bull brand now faces stiff competition in a global market which has seen significant growth since 2003. This is particularly the case in Poland; its energy drink (ED) market is valued at over €210m and today saturated with over 100 brands.

The Dynamic Energy Drink is named after the Lotos premium fuel 'Dynamic' and already has close ties with the rally championships, for example its sponsorship of the 68th Polish Rally at Mikolajki.

Dynamic is cast in black and mirrors a number of other energy drink brands in this respect including V-Power (Shell's first iteration), Boxer Energy (Germany), Monster (USA), Rockstar (USA) and Battery (Finland). 

In respect to Polish ED brands the main domestic player is Tiger Energy Drink, a brand owned by FoodCare. Other brands include XL, XY, ADHD, Freedom, ishot, xrace, GreenGo, Control, Izo go, Pitbull, Phoenix, TruckPet… There is even a Polish energy drink called Black.

Why choose black with its symbolic association with gasoline fuel? Energy drinks sales enjoy particular success within c-store roadside sector and the association with petroleum may appeal to the male sense of machoism. According to Mediamark (2008) market penetration amongst women drinkers is just 22.5%.  

Both Dynamic and V-Power capitalise on the ED market to  communicate the power and high performance aspect of the fuel brand identity. Lotos takes it further with a white italicised wordmark on black background, lending it a sporty edge that sits well with its association with Rally championships. 

We will be watching closely how the Polish ED market develops in 2012. If global trends are anything to go by, we will see a growing importance in the use of natural ingredients to qualify the health benefits that energy drinks are purported to offer, and there may be some up-branding (from energy drink to energy beverage) as competitors jostle for market share.

As a side note, Minale Tattersfield designed the packaging for the energy drink brand Shark (Case Study PDF, 659 KB) and its work resulted in a Gold award for Creative Excellence in the Beverage Packaging Global Awards.

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