Energy drinks is a small category in Cameroon, with players seeking to minimise price increases in order to encourage sales growth. COVID-19 led to a significant decline in demand for energy drinks in the first half of 2020 due to the lack of outdoor activities which drive demand in the product area in Cameroon.
The consumer base for energy drinks is divided between workers who use energy drinks as a boost to get through the working day; students who use energy drinks to help with mental clarity during studying; and consumers who are interested in fitness activities and thus use energy drinks as an alternative to sports drinks, which is not a significant category in Cameroon. Players thus attempt to emulate the functional qualities offered by sports drinks, by adapting the ingredients in energy drinks to offer products which are seen as healthier and more befitting of drinks to support sporting activities.
Dis’ Red Bull, unsurprisingly, continues to lead energy drinks in 2020. The brand has become synonymous with energy drinks and is most likely the first one people think of when considering the product area.
As energy drinks is a niche category in Cameroon, players are expected to use competitive pricing as the main driver for sales, thus appealing to the price-sensitive consumer base in Cameroon, particularly in a context of a global economic recession. As such, volume sales are expected to continue to show constant growth over the forecast period, despite competition from carbonates, which offers more favourable pricing.
In addition to energy drinks being a niche category, there is limited innovation and there are few new players in the category. This is due to the category being dominated by the leading players, and consumers in energy drinks tend to be loyal to the well-known brands such as Red Bull from Dis BV, Zone from Extra Beverage Industries Co Ltd, Reaktor from Source du Pays SA, and XXL from Brasseries du Cameroun.
As the country gradually comes out of lockdown, the pandemic subsides and outdoor and sporting activities resume in Cameroon, demand for energy drinks is expected to show growth again. Similarly, as workers resume work and students return to university they will opt for energy drinks again to get through the working day and for mental clarity.
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