SB talks shelve Sky drink launch

BSkyB has suspended the launch of its Sky Sports Drink, planned for this week, following top level discussions with Lucozade-owner SmithKline Beecham.

The apple and blackcurrant isotonic drink (exclusively revealed in Marketing Week on April 21) was to launch on May 1 after BSkyB struck a deal

with soft drinks manufacturer

AG Barr, which is to produce

and distribute the product.

Sources say that SB called a meeting where discussions about “advertising arrangements” took place. BSkyB was informed that it was inappropriate for SB to continue to support the station when it intended to launch a direct competitor into the sports drink market.

It is understood that BSkyB later came back to SB and informed the company that the launch would be postponed.

As Marketing Week went to press, BSkyB marketing manager Jim Hytner would say only that the launch had been delayed.

SB refused to comment on speculation about the company’s involvement.