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Jägermeister Takes On New Shot Competitors With First-Ever U.S. Extension

October 1, 2013

Sidney Frank Importing Co. is aiming to reinvigorate its Jägermeister liqueur brand with the launch of its first U.S. extension, seasonal offering Jägermeister Spice. The limited edition expression hits national distribution today, priced at $22.99 a 750-ml. Jägermeister Spice (25% abv) uses the same 56 different herbs, blooms, roots and fruits as Jägermeister Original, but highlights the vanilla and cinnamon spices to give it a warmer taste profile, the company tells SND.

“We’re expecting to sell more than 100,000 nine-liter cases in the first limited edition rollout, which will be from October to December,” says Adam Rosen, executive vice president of marketing at Sidney Frank. “We’re very bullish on bringing it back for next year. Reaction from consumers and trade has been off the charts.”

Rosen adds that Jägermeister Spice is helping the brand enter new consumption occasions, as Sidney Frank is encouraging consumers to enjoy it neat at room temperature or mixed with cola. A significant marketing push is backing the launch, including digital, social media and print advertising, amid a large out-of-home initiative for the Jägermeister parent brand.

According to Impact Databank, Jägermeister hit a peak of 2.9 million cases in the U.S. in 2008, boosted by its positioning as a favorite for the on-premise shot occasion. But the brand has since lost ground, declining 3.2% last year to 2.45 million cases, as competitors like Sazerac’s Fireball have emerged in the shot segment. Fireball jumped by 80% to 810,000 cases last year.

In response, Sidney Frank has ramped up activity behind Jägermeister, including the outdoor campaign and the recent launch of the Shotmeister, a single-bottle tap machine intended to bring Jäger’s “ice cold shot” experience to the off-premise. In its short time on the market, Rosen says the Shotmeister—designed to hold 750-ml. and 1-liter bottles and chill and dispense Jägermeister at temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit—has already succeeded in drawing new attention to the brand.

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