Albertsons Thirsty for Bigger Share of $33.4B Sparkling Water Biz

Relaunches own brand Soleil with exclusive artwork, Spotify partnership 
Albertsons Cos. Soleil
Photograph: Shutterstock

In a move that shows Albertsons Cos.’ confidence when it comes to putting its own brands portfolio up against national brands in the most competitive categories, the Boise, Idaho-based grocer is relaunching its Soleil sparkling water with summer packaging featuring designs created by globally renowned artists and four new flavors: mango, raspberry lime, tangerine and watermelon. 

Beginning this month, the new designs and flavors will be featured in the exclusive "Sip to the Beat" summer promotion using the digital music service Spotify, which allows customers who purchase Soleil to unlock one of three curated Spotify playlists.

“We’re excited to team up with Spotify and share the eclectic packaging artwork from a diverse group of artists for this relaunch,” said Lisa Mirae, senior director of brands and marketing, in a statement. “The entertaining playlists, exciting designs and delicious Soleil flavors are a perfect combination for summertime fun. Soleil is crisp, refreshing and a healthier beverage alternative to regular soda.”

Driven largely by consumers seeking healthier alternatives to sugary beverages and soda, the sparkling water segment has exploded in recent years, fueling increased competition from brands such as La Croix, Perrier, Bubly and more that have flooded the space. Grand View Research Inc., puts the U.S. market size value for sparkling water in 2021 at $33.4 billion, with a 12.6% compound annual growth rate and a revenue forecast of nearly $77 billion by 2028.

“Consumers are embracing alternative beverage options as evident by the strong growth of Soleil since its launch in 2016,” the company said. Soleil is a part of the billion-dollar Signature family of brands. 

Albertsons EVP and Chief Merchandising Officer Geoff White has been vocal about how “powerful” the company’s brands are and how they contribute to its overall success. During an investor presentation last December, White cited an own brands business that’s built like a CPG with a customer-first mindset and a team focused on innovation as key reasons for its success.

“And we have positioned the portfolio to drive sales growth, and it has done that by outpacing the market for three consecutive years,” he said at the time, adding that Albertsons Own Brands is also a key component in driving customer loyalty and satisfaction, with 100% of its most loyal customers putting Own Brands products in their baskets.

Soleil sparkling water is made with carbonated water and natural flavors. Soleil does not contain added sugars or sweeteners, artificial flavors, calories or sodium. It is produced by Albertsons Cos. self-manufacturing teams at plants in California, Washington and Colorado.

In addition to the four new flavors, Soleil is also available in original, berry, lemon, lime, grapefruit, peach, blood orange, cucumber melon, black cherry, cranberry raspberry, strawberry, pineapple and apple. The lime, blood orange and grapefruit flavors are also available with caffeine. 

The redesigned Soleil packages reflect the different flavors of each variety through art and music and are the collaborative results of seven talented artists from around the globe, adds the company.

 “We’re really pleased with the fun new look of each Soleil flavor,” Mirae said. “The designs are an imaginative way to celebrate culture, music and the power of Soleil to add a little sunshine to any occasion. The bold Soleil script on each package means it will still be very recognizable to our customers.” 

Albertsons Cos. has four one-billion-dollar brands, including the Signature family of brands. The company’s Own Brands portfolio includes Open Nature, O Organics, Lucerne, Primo Taglio, debi lilly design, waterfront Bistro, and Value Corner—all exclusive to Albertsons Companies stores, including Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Carrs, Jewel-Osco, Acme, Shaw's, Star Market, United Supermarkets, Market Street and Haggen. 



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