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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Alimentation Couche-Tard's Circle K Southeast Division, operator of 366 convenience stores, launched the company's first wholly owned, proprietary energy beverage, GazZu, in partnership with independent energy drink producer BooKoo Energy, the company stated.
GazZu was developed in response to the energy drink boom and lack of drinks that appeal to both sexes, according to Circle K officials.
"To successfully enter the fast-growing energy drink segment, we realized that GazZu had to have a unique approach, different from the typical macho look, feel and taste. We wanted broad appeal," Russ Kidd, senior category manager for packaged beverages for Circle K Southeast, said in a statement.
GazZu will be offered in three flavors -- regular energy (citrus), cherry and orange-mango -- that were developed through taste and brand profile testing with more than 400 Southeast residents from all age groups, the company stated.
Cherry and orange-mango flavors conjured memories of "longtime favorites cherry popsicles and orange creamsicles," the company stated. Additional flavors -- including a low-carb version -- are already being developed, the company reported.
"We're extremely excited to be partnering with a leading convenience store chain like Circle K," Dan Lee, president of BooKoo Energy, said in a statement. "The fact that they were so involved in the concept, research, development, marketing and throughout the creation of GazZu reinforces the strength of the partnership between Circle K and BooKoo, and will help to make GazZu a success."
Packaging for the brand combines high-tech and retro elements, appealing to hip energy drink consumers, both male and female, the company stated. The drink's tagline is "Give me a G."
Initially, 16-ounce cans of GazZu will be sold exclusively at Circle K stores in the Southeast, Southwest and Midwest U.S. GazZu will be priced competitively with other front line energy drinks, according to the company.
To promote the new beverage, all Circle K Southeast locations will feature a Buy 1 Get 1 Free promotion on GazZu, which started Sept. 5, and will continue through the end of the year, the company stated. Sampling events will also be launched this fall in markets across the country to create buzz, according to the company.