PepsiCo to launch coffee-flavoured cola in early 2006

PepsiCo is to start 2006 with the UK launch of coffee-flavoured cola Pepsi Max Cino, aimed at fizzy drinks consumers aged 25 and over.

An insider has revealed that while Asda will stock the product from Boxing Day, it will be available everywhere else from January.

Pepsi Max Cino contains no added sugar and no extra caffeine so is not going to be classed alongside energy drinks such as Red Bull and Sprite 3G. The source says: “PepsiCo hopes that Cino will attract older, more sophisticated consumers who will enjoy its smooth taste.”

With “heavyweight support” behind the launch, Pepsi Max Cino will be a permanent addition to PepsiCo’s portfolio, as opposed to a limited-edition variant such as cinnamon and ginger flavoured Pepsi Max Punch, which is only available over the Christmas period (MW July 14).

A source says: “I’m not entirely convinced by Cino, but it does taste better than you expect it will. With the marketing and advertising support PepsiCo can give it, you’d expect it to do well.”

PepsiCo recently launched similar products in France and Belgium, while Coca-Cola has registered three potential brand names for a coffee drink of its own – Blak, Makkio and Maquio – which could be on sale in the US and Europe by 2006.

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