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Dr Pepper Increases Stake in Sports Drink Bodyarmor Owner

Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Inc. DPS announced that it has increased its equity stake in private company, BA Sports Nutrition, which owns the premium sports drink brand, Bodyarmor.

The beverage company purchased additional $6 million stake in the company, raising its ownership from 11.7% to 15.5%. Last August, Dr Pepper bought 11.7% equity stake for $20 million.

With the recent investment, Dr Pepper became the second-largest stake holder in Bodyarmor, following the brand’s chairman and co-founder, Mike Repole.

Bodyarmor has been part of Dr Pepper’s allied brands portfolio since 2013 and performed well over the past two years. The sports drink, available in eight flavors, contains potassium-packed electrolytes, coconut water and vitamins and is sweetened with cane sugar. It contains no artificial flavor or color.

The drink, launched in 2012, is a relatively new entrant in the sports drink market, presently dominated by PepsiCo, Inc.’s PEP Gatorade and The Coca-Cola Company's KO Powerade. The market is witnessing strong growth backed by the increasing demand for healthier drinks and changing consumer attitude toward health and fitness.

Bodyarmor was launched by Repole and Lance Collins. Basketball star, Kobe Bryant, holds a significant stake in BA Sports Nutrition. The brand is also backed by other athletes like National Football League quarterback, Andrew Luck, and Major League Baseball outfielder, Mike Trout.

Bodyarmor is one of the several allied or third-party brands in Dr Pepper’s portfolio which also includes Big Red, FIJI, AriZona, Vita Coco, Neuro and Bai 5 brands.

Dr Pepper regularly signs distribution agreements with emerging, high-growth third-party brands. These partnerships allow the company to participate in adjacent and growing categories while fully capitalizing on its manufacturing and distribution network. The allied brands are also higher dollar revenue products and therefore favorably impact product mix and total sales. Allied brands have been an important driver of revenues and profit over the past few quarters.

Dr Pepper carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked beverage stock is Primo Water Corporation PRMW which sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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