Canned Water Triumphs In The US

Canned or tetra brik water, which can apparently pass for a beer or a carton of milk, are becoming more and more popular in stores, streets or festivals in the US, to the point that the canned water startup Liquid Death, which appeared in 2019, it is now valued at 700 million dollars .

It is not cheap: a 500 ml can costs between 1.69 and 2.29 dollars in the store, but this price can go up to 5 when buying it at a street stall.

The Santa Monica-based company, whose tagline is “Death to Plastic,” this week raised $ 70 million in funding led by Science Ventures, raising its valuation to nearly $1 million. As reported by the business press, it will use this investment to expand into new beverage categories and the European market .

“We think Liquid Death may be the fastest growing soft drink of all time ,” Peter Pham, co-founder of Science Ventures, said in a statement. By comparison, he noted that it took Monster energy drink four and Celsius, another energy drink, twelve years to reach the level of retail success that Liquid Death has had in just three years.

The company is set to generate $130 million in revenue this year , which would be a huge bump considering that the figure was $45 million in 2021.

cutting-edge marketing
Liquid Death was co-founded by Mike Cessario, former creative director of Netflix, and plays on the fact that its packaging and name (“liquid death”) can be mistaken for an alcoholic drink and its spots show people drinking the water making a hole in the base of the can, a technique for drinking beer popularly known as “shotgun”.

One of his publicity images shows the can packed inside some kind of luxury coffin, with the can wrapped in red leather.

These water cans, which also sell collectible dolls with their logo, candles, clothes and hats , offer their water at concerts and in chains such as Target or Whole Foods, as well as the Amazon website.

In 2020, the company released a “Greatest Hates” album, using negative comments on social media for the lyrics. The album included songs like “Fire your marketing guy” (Fire the guy who is responsible for marketing).

Other avant-garde marketing campaigns for Liquid Death – which has 1.3 million followers on Instagram – have been to include drawing blood from skateboarder Tony Hawk in a design of skateboards, which are already sold out.

Liquid Death claims on its website that its “infinitely recyclable” still and sparkling water comes from the Austrian Alps and that it donates a portion of every can sold to help eliminate plastic pollution.

The company’s CEO, Mike Caesario, said in an interview with Bloomberg that part of Liquid Death’s success can be attributed to its cans making the product seem “fun and unhealthy like beer or an energy drink.”

Other substitutes for traditional bottles
One of Liquid Death’s competitors is Path Water, which offers water in aluminum bottles and just raised $30 million in funding.

This company describes itself as “the first 100% refillable and recyclable bottled water in an aluminum bottle,” meaning they offer a non-disposable product, unlike cans.

For its part, Boxed Water uses a cardboard container, which is 92% plant-based and 100% recyclable . This water in carton claims to be “a sustainable alternative to plastic bottles and aluminum cans,” in a small jab at its Liquid Death competitors.

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