Coca-Cola
Coca-Cola shows no signs of slowing down

It has been quite a year for Coca-Cola. In just the last month the company has launched a new energy drink, Coke Energy, and water brand, Aquarius, in the UK.

That’s just a snapshot of the rapid innovation taking place at the global drinks giant and CEO James Quincey is clear there are no plans to slow that down.

Speaking to investors this week, Quincey promised that a ready-to-drink Costa product is imminent. He said constant innovation is “crucial for sustained growth” and that “blurring category lines” is allowing the company to innovate in different areas.

It is all part of Quincey’s vision for Coke to become a ‘total beverage company’. But what does this actually mean?

Coke breaks down brands into leaders, challengers and explorers – each with different marketing strategies and goals.

Leaders are brands at the top of their category, like Coca-Cola, which need large marketing campaigns to maintain relevancy.

Meanwhile, challengers are, unsurprisingly, middle brands attempting to challenge big brands for the top spot, and explorers are those attempting to branch out into new occasions and areas.

According to Quincey, half of its explorer brands are growing in double digits, up from a third last year.

These are the brands that will help the company to thrive as consumer habits change and where the future of Coke and its total beverage vision lies. MF

Marlboro moves into life insurance

In a weird turn of events, this week tobacco giant Philip Morris, which is mostly known for selling Marlboro cigarettes, announced its foray into the life insurance space.

But not just any old life insurance: this is life insurance for ex-smokers. And it’s cheap, starting from only a fiver. It is offering discounts too, depending on whether you switch to one of its vaping products or not. Better still, if you quit smoking for a year you might get a 50% discount on premiums. (We are still not quite sure how this will be determined. Blood tests? Breathalisers? The Philip Morris smoking police?)

While it is a smart business move and follows the general trend that people are smoking less and vaping more, we are sure the irony isn’t lost on Philip Morris either.

It has sold tobacco products, caused cancer and played a hand in making smoking the leading cause of preventable death for almost two centuries. And now it wants people to pay it to insure their lives.

The new biz isn’t trading as Philip Morris though. In fact, ‘Reviti’ looks like any other independent London-based startup and a separate brand entirely. This will work in its favour if people don’t put two and two together.

It will be interesting to see how Reviti is marketed. Will there be any synergies or crossovers with Philip Morris’s own marketing and brand strategies? Will their marketing teams work together?

This is something Marketing Week will be looking to reveal in due course. EH

The end of ‘Sasda’

Asda

Well. That’s the end of that then. After a year of deliberation, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has decided that Sainsbury’s and Asda must exist as separate entities.

The competition watchdog concluded that a…