HEALTH

GNC-branded product portfolio gets boost with help from Shadow Beverages and Snacks

BY Michael Johnsen

PITTSBURGH — GNC on Monday announced an exclusive licensing agreement with Shadow Beverages and Snacks, the producer and distributor of Ironclad Energy + Hydration and No Fear Energy drinks.

The deal is expected to push the GNC brand name beyond its retail base and partnership with Rite Aid in the drug channel. Under the terms of the licensing agreement, Shadow Beverages and Snacks will produce a line of ready-to-drink products that will be marketed under the GNC brand.

"This exclusive licensing agreement with Shadow Beverages allows the GNC brand to expand and grow well beyond GNC’s own retail and online outlets, and [to] service a much broader and more diverse audience of active consumers looking for products to help them live a healthy lifestyle with products they trust," stated Tom Dowd, GNC EVP.

GNC will leverage its 75 years of expertise, quality and name recognition to help develop true better-for-you drink lines across multiple categories. Shadow Beverages will develop, produce, market and sell drinks under the GNC Live Well trademark, which will be available across a wide range of retail outlets, the companies stated. It is anticipated that the first products developed under the agreement will go into distribution in third quarter 2011.

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HEALTH

HDMA names new VP communications

BY Michael Johnsen

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Healthcare Distribution Management Association on Monday named John Parker VP communications, where he will serve as the association’s lead communications strategist.

Prior to his new role at HDMA, Parker most recently served as the senior director for external affairs at UnitedHealth Group, where he led the company’s communications efforts during the healthcare-reform debate. Prior to UHG, Parker oversaw external communications for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. While at the Association of American Medical Colleges, Parker served as the primary spokesman with the media on key issues in academic medicine, and managed the association’s external publications.

Parker’s initial exposure to health care was as an editor and reporter for FDC Reports (now Elsevier Business Intelligence). He holds a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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ZonePerfect pairs sweet, salty in new line

BY Michael Johnsen

ABBOTT PARK, Ill. — Abbott on Friday introduced a new line of ZonePerfect Sweet & Salty nutrition bars. The new ZonePerfect cashew pretzel and trail mix bars combine sweet and salty flavor varieties while providing nutrition. ZonePerfect Sweet & Salty bars have 10 g of protein and 19 vitamins and minerals.

To celebrate the launch, the ZonePerfect brand is inviting consumers to treat their sweet and salty sides by requesting a sample bar on ZonePerfect’s Facebook page. Available now, taste seekers can share the offer with their friends while savoring a Sweet & Salty bar for themselves — while supplies last.

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