Applying a WKD twist to a trend which has had something of a transformational effect on modern drinking, brand owner SHS Drinks is to launch WKD Dark Fruit.

Available in early spring, this permanent addition to the WKD range harnesses the power of the easily understood ‘dark fruit’ concept and delivers it to an RTD audience. The new variant will build on what was a hugely successful 2019 for WKD, with brand volumes in the convenience sector growing over 18%1.

Aligned to existing brand variants in terms of ABV, retail pricing, and bottle sizes (i.e. 4% ABV, 275ml and 700ml), WKD Dark Fruit will generate further momentum for the UK’s No.1 RTD2, growing the category and building incremental sales for stockists. The new flavour will also appear in a 4x275ml format and in £2.99 price-marked 700ml, exclusively for independents.

Rolling out across all trade channels, WKD Dark Fruit will be supported by a comprehensive, brand-wide package comprising in-outlet media, prominent off-shelf display, POS kits, social media engagement and digital advertising. All facets will embrace suitably WKD tongue-in-cheek messaging.

WKD Dark Fruit launches hot on the heels of last year’s hugely successful NPD initiative: WKD Pink. Despite only being launched in July, WKD Pink was the RTD category’s most successful NPD of 2019, generating £2.3m of sales to year end3. WKD Pink was a bold step delivering a unique take on the biggest trend in the alcohol category and generated real cut-through with consumers.

WKD Pink combines all the flavour and intrigue of gin with all the simple approachability of WKD. The spirit-inspired product has everything consumers expect from WKD: fun, personality and accessibility, and truly contemporises the brand, providing a vibrancy and freshness which cause consumers to reassess the No.1 RTD2 and, more importantly, the whole RTD category.

“WKD Dark Fruit this year – as WKD Pink did last – will deliver reappraisal of the whole brand and have a hugely positive halo effect on all WKD variants,” says Nick White, head of alcohol brand marketing at SHS Drinks. “With both variants, we’ve taken hugely popular themes and applied a clever WKD twist.

“The launch of Dark Fruit will ensure that WKD remains fresh and relevant to its core 18-24 year-old target market and continues to generate strong sales growth for both convenience retailers and wholesale/cash and carry depots. This innovative flavour RTD will deliver something genuinely new and truly exciting for the entire category,” concludes White.

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