Whyte and Mackay is throwing its Vladivar brand into the RTD sector with a new line of premixed cocktails.
The Vladivar Cocktail range will hit shelves in April and is designed to succeed Veba, the vodka brand’s earlier foray into the category.
Developed with Independent Distillers, the four-strong range features Seabreeze, a mix of vodka, cranberry and grapefruit, Cosmopolitan, which contains vodka, orange liqueur and lemon, and Vladivar Black and White Russians - both versions of the classic coffee and cream-based drinks.
Glen Gribbon, brands director at Whyte and Mackay, said: “Veba performs well enough to keep it in the portfolio but it’s not a priority. In the past we have made the mistake of looking at too many new products. We are looking at the premixed concept rather than just launching a new RTD flavour.”
Although the final bottle design is still being decided, all four versions will be in the standard 275ml format.
One spirits buyer at a leading multiple said: “They are something a bit different and are moving away from the usual lemon and orange flavours. Vladivar needs to go back to the 18 to 24-year-old market and target new consumers, which is what Smirnoff Ice has done.”
The innovation reflects an emerging trend in the RTD sector for cocktail-style products. The Grocer revealed two weeks ago that Bacardi-Martini was working on a top secret cocktail premix.