Scotland’s ’other national drink’ enjoyed a “particularly encouraging year” with its volume share of the UK carbonates category growing 20%.
This growth was underpinned by “substantial marketing investment”, including sports-based sponsorships such as the Scottish Football League and Rugby League in England.
Marketing spend was also increased by 20% in a bid to broaden the brand’s appeal south of the border. The extra spend on advertising in England included a musical-themed advertising campaign.
Overall, the Scottish drinks maker says its products had “significantly outperformed” the UK soft drinks market in 2009 with a 20.8% rise in full-year adjusted pre-tax profits, boosted by strong growth in carbonate brands like Irn-Bru.
The increase was seen across both the still drinks, water and carbonates segments. Around £17.2m of the growth in revenue was delivered through the stills segment, with the addition of the Rubicon brand adding “significant weight and diversity” to the company’s portfolio.
Rubicon was bought in 2008, with the brand having “performed strongly”. The addition of a watermelon flavour and significant sampling and PR around ’mango week’ helped build momentum for the brand.