American beverage conglomerate Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. has enlisted the help of Kobe Bryant, the Lakers’ star shooting guard, to popularize BodyArmor, a sports drink that hopes to compete with Gatorade.
Bryant is also an investor in the brand, and referred to his contribution as “substantial.”
Launched by Vitaminwater cofounder Mike Repole, BodyArmor is made by BA Sports Nutrition and is described as a “premium sports drink packed with electrolytes, vitamins, coconut water, and natural flavors, colors, and sweeteners.”
With its $20 million investment, the Dr Pepper Snapple Group has an 11.7 percent stake in the company. The partnership will help BodyArmor gain a much wider distribution, “and we are on our way to becoming a national brand,” Repole said in a statement.
While Bryant is the most high-profile athlete to join BodyArmor’s investors, the team also includes pitchmen like Rockets’ James Harden, the Cavaliers’ Kevin Love, and the Seahawks’ Richard Sherman, among others.
According to The Wall Street Journal, sales from the last nine months have increased 180 percent since last year.