In the United States, Keurig Green Mountain has announced that it is to discontinue its at-home carbonated, chilled beverage machine, Keurig Kold – just nine months after its launch.
With tie-ins with brands from The Coca-Cola Company and Dr Pepper Snapple, Keurig had invested $1 billion developing Kold and was hoping that the $370 machine would give it new space for growth beyond its core coffee business.
Consumers who have purchased a Keurig Kold machine can claim a full refund, and Keurig will continue to sell drinks pods until supplies run out.
“We view our initial Kold system launch as a pioneering execution,” Keurig said in a statement. “We learned a lot — including that consumers are willing to embrace the concept of a system that delivers fresh-made, cold beverages in the home — and we’ll build our learnings into future beverage systems.”
After much hype, and a few delays, Keurig Kold finally launched in September 2015, but almost immediately, customers began complaining about the size of the machine, the time it took to make drinks, the noise the machine made, and its price.
The Coca-Cola Company took a $2.4 billion stake in Keurig in 2014, and partnered with the company to create Keurig Kold flavours from its brands such as as Diet Coke and Sprite. In December 2015, Keurig was acquired by Jacobs Douwe Egberts owner JAB Group in a deal valuing Keurig at $13.9 billion. Coca-Cola then sold its equity stake. For a short while it looked as if Kold may survive despite customer criticism, but some analysts observed that the JAB Group’s aspirations were almost entirely around coffee and questioned the relevance of the at-home soft drinks maker in the overall business plan.
Announcing the decision to cancel Kold, a Keurig spokesperson said: “Reimagining how beverages can be created, personalised and enjoyed will continue to guide Keurig’s strategy into the future.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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