Kirin-owned Lion NZ has signed an exclusive distribution agreement with Australia-based premium mixer brand StrangeLove, as the company aims to capitalise on the growing appetite for premium mixers.
StrangeLove markets a range of premium mixers which are made using natural ingredients “to create unique flavour positions that bring a customised experience to spirit drinkers”. Mixer flavours include dirty tonic, bitter lemon and salted grapefruit.
Lion claims that the distribution partnership will provide hospitality venues and retailers with a low-sugar accompaniment to Lion’s premium spirits portfolio, which includes brands such as Tanqueray and Bombay Sapphire.
According to statistics provided by Lion, gin value in New Zealand currently stands at $36 million, while premium mixers have been growing at an annual rate of 207%.
Stefan Gray, general manager of Lion’s non-alcoholic division, says, “StrangeLove is a great match for our spirits portfolio and will help ensure we meet the evolving tastes and occasions of consumers.
“In line with the huge growth of premium spirits, crafted premium mixers are booming. It makes sense, with consumers wanting to ensure they don’t ruin their high-end spirit by mixing it with a low-end product.
“The team also has a great selection of adult sodas like Smoked Cola, Yuzu and Double Ginger that will be great additions to our wider non-alcoholic beverage portfolio within the Drinks Collective.
“We have big plan to grow the Drinks Collective as part of our commitment to ensuring at least 10% of Lion’s sales come from our non-alcoholic range by 2025.”
David Temminghoff, CEO of StrangeLove, added: “With New Zealand a key growth market for StrangeLove, it’s exciting to have Lion on board to help us build our presence here.
“With their strong distribution network and expertise in hospitality, we’re confident they’ll support us to grow our momentum and mirror the huge success we’re achieving in Australia. Lion also has an enviable portfolio of spirits that our brand matches perfectly.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019