• Molson Coors secures exclusive distribution partnership with Bodega Bay to support further roll-out in UK stores from June
  • Move into the hard seltzer category in the UK another step on Molson Coors’ ‘beyond beer’ journey
  • Partnership will tap into growing hard seltzer opportunity in the UK, in line with consumer appetite for low calorie, naturally flavoured alcoholic options and ready-to-drink formats

Molson Coors Beverage Company will support the roll-out of the Bodega Bay hard seltzer range in stores across the UK, after securing an exclusive distribution partnership with the brand. The move follows Molson Coors re-branding as Molson Coors Beverage Company at the end of last year, signalling its intention to continue expanding its portfolio beyond beer.

Following its successful launch in the UK in 2019, Bodega Bay has secured listings in premium retailers including Harrods, Harvey Nichols and Daylesford, as well as more recently being stocked in Sainsbury’s and Morrisons. The partnership will now see the brand benefit from Molson Coors’ routes-to-market strength and expertise to further scale its UK presence across multiple grocers and convenience retail.

Jim Shearer, Category, Insight and Innovation Director for EMEA & APAC at Molson Coors Beverage Company said: “Bodega Bay has successfully launched in the UK market thanks to its unique brand and truly great tasting liquid – immediately tapping into the big trends towards premium ready-to-drink alcoholic drinks and a desire for low calorie, naturally flavoured options that reflect a more health conscious lifestyle.

The growth and opportunity in the hard seltzer category is clear, but we wanted to partner with a brand we felt had the ability, because of the sheer quality of the drink and brand proposition, to become a cornerstone of the category as it grows.

“With Bodega Bay we feel we have the perfect brand and partner to help our customers make the most of the hard seltzer opportunity and build real longevity into the category.”

Charlie Markland, founder of Bodega Bay, said: “Joining forces with Molson Coors feels like a really natural and right next step for us. We wanted to work with a partner who had real presence in the trade, who could help us scale up, but also who had clear expertise and strength in managing and growing a new premium brand. We’ve seen the team at Molson Coors do that with Doom Bar, with Rekorderlig and Aspall.

“We have a shared ethos around how to nurture and grow brands in the trade and this partnership means we now have the routes-to-market and know-how to scale-up in the right way. We’re starting in the UK, but the plan is to scale internationally with Molson Coors, targeting Western Europe markets, Australia, Japan and South Korea.”

The Bodega Bay range of low-calorie sparkling alcoholic drinks at 4% ABV includes two distinctive, quintessentially British premium flavours – the flora and fauna-inspired Elderflower, Lemon & Mint, and superfood-infused Apple, Ginger & Acai Berry. Made for what Charlie Markland calls “healthy hedonist” consumers who want to enjoy an intensely refreshing alcoholic drink with friends but don’t want to compromise their healthy lifestyle with high calorie, artificially sweetened options, the Bodega Bay range contains entirely natural ingredients, just 73 calories and are gluten free and vegan friendly.

The drinks are available in 250ml cans which are ideal for on-the-go or outdoor occasions, with a Californian-inspired design that will provide a point of difference on the shelves. With a desire to be a summer drink with a purpose, Bodega Bay has also recently partnered with The Thirst Project, pledging to invest at least 1% of its sales to bring clean drinking water to people in need across 13 countries worldwide. This equates to 17 litres of clean drinking water per every can sold.

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