New flavour for Sunny D in summer push

Sunny Delight Beverages Company (SDBC), the new owner of the beleaguered Sunny D drink brand, is planning a summer onslaught with a new flavour and a television campaign.

Saatchi & Saatchi devised the animated character Max Wilde for the brand in 2003, to address the health concerns surrounding the drink. But the character may be axed as the company wants to move the brand back to “a more lifestyle proposition”.

Sunny D was a startling success on launch in 1998 but suffered a steep sales decline after it came under fire from food experts for its sugar content. It has since been reformulated and a “no added sugar” variant added to the portfolio.

Equity house JW Childs Associated bought the brand from Procter & Gamble in April last year and set up SDBC. The company handed marketing responsibilities in the UK to its distributor, Gerber Foods, last month (MW February 3).

Gerber Foods has since recruited a three-strong brand team. Led by Gerber marketing and business development director Rob Spencer the team plans a summer offensive with a new, as yet unrevealed, flavour and “a significant marketing spend”.

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