Thursday December 7, 2023

Sports Drink Market Fueled by Athletes

  • Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald is a co-owner of the company.
  • Antetokounmpo is one of many athletes who have recently backed sports nutrition products.
Ready Nutrition
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The world’s biggest athletes continue to team up with new sports drink companies.

Ready Nutrition, which makes protein drinks, powder and snacks, announced earlier this month that it’s coming to grocery stores with help from investors like two-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. Two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald co-owns the company.

Antetokounmpo and Donald helped develop the company’s products. “That’s valuable information from two elite athletes with two different body types,” said founder and president Pat Cavanaugh. “We’re not trying to be number one this year. We’re trying to learn.”

A growing list of athletes have recently backed similar products.

  • Bodyarmor announced NBA and WNBA players Trae Young, Kemba Walker and Sabrina Ionescu, and NFL players Drew Lock, CeeDee Lamb and Christian McCaffrey, as partners in August.
  • BioSteel added several sports ambassadors in October, including Atlanta Braves pitcher Mike Soroka, sportscasters Erin Andrews and Amanda Balionis and personal trainer Brittany Matthews — making her a partner alongside fiancé Patrick Mahomes.
  • Gatorade signed NBA All-Star Damian Lillard and golfer Matthew Wolff in December.

Cavanaugh says Ready Nutrition will target Cleveland, Columbus and Donald’s hometown of Pittsburgh initially, but has plans for a national campaign.

PepsiCo-owned Gatorade still maintains a more than 70% share of the sports drink market.

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