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Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Travis Scott’s CACTI Eclipses Hard Seltzer Giants In First Week Of Sales

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Travis Scott’s Anheuser-Busch-backed hard seltzer has finally launched, with the brand reporting record first-week sales.

CACTI reports the tequila-based seltzer has outperformed the launch of major hard seltzers and secured the highest first-week rate of sale for a variety pack in Anheuser-Busch history.

CACTI’s meteoric first week comes on the heels of Anheuser-Busch announcing a $1 billion investment into US supply chain and domestic production efforts. This investment will bolster hard seltzer and canned cocktail production.

Online inventory of CACTI sold out within twelve hours, while partner retailers across the country reported stock selling out within 24 hours.

Looking to other hard seltzer launches, CACTI is outpacing competitors, with Anheuser-Busch noting Scott’s hard seltzer tracked more first-week sales than Truly Hard Seltzer Lemonade mix pack (launched week ending January 12, 2020), Vizzy hard seltzer variety pack (launched week ending April 12, 2020) and Mike’s Hard Seltzer variety pack (launched week ending February 7, 2021). Reps note sales were also stronger than the first week sales of Truly Iced Tea Variety Pack (launched the week of January 10, 2021) and VIZZY Hard Seltzer variety pack (April 12, 2020) combined. 

“The reaction to the product has the team and I motivated to go even harder as we plan out what’s next for the brand,” says the 28-year-old brand whisperer in a statement. “We are just getting started.” 

During the first week, the Hip Hop superstar drove through Los Angeles in a CACTI truck to deliver orders to unsuspecting fans. 

His hype helped CACTI break into the hard seltzer category with a 3.2% share, overtaking market shares of VIZZY Hard Seltzer, Mike’s Hard Lemonade Seltzer and Coors Seltzer (via Neilsen-tracked multi-outlets) in the week ending March 21.

Drawing inspiration from the multi-hyphenate’s love of tequila, CACTI forgoes the usual malt liquor base of hard seltzer, instead turning to 100% premium blue weber agave as a base. The drink clocks in at 7% ABV. 

CACTI is available in a range of flavors including lime, pineapple and strawberry. The product is sold in 12-ounce, 16-ounce and 25-ounce cans.

The hard seltzer’s top-performing states as of the week ending March 21 were California (8.8%), Arizona (5.3%), Texas (5.2%), Oregon (4.2%) and Washington (4.1%).

The tequila-based hard seltzer is quickly becoming a prized pony for Anheuser-Busch. While the company also owns Bud Light Seltzer and Michelob Ultra Organic Seltzer, CACTI is perfectly poised to become a front runner in the category. The launch helped Anheuser-Busch capture 19.5% of the overall share of the seltzer category, up 20% from the prior-held 16.3%. 

After White Claw’s complete coup of the drinks scene back in 2019, the hard seltzer category has proved a vital one for major spirits companies to capitalize on. Drinks market analysis firm IWSR noted that over the last few years the hard seltzer sector has boomed, growing by 346% in 2017, 246% in 2018 and 214% in 2019. The IWSR predicts the category will triple by 2023, reaching over 281 million cases a year.

Every major brand is now offering some form of RTD, from Crown Royal’s whisky and cola to Coca-Cola’s
excellent boozy iteration of Topo Chico.

With CACTI, we’re seeing two major drinks trends—hard seltzer and celebrity spirits— join forces. And Scott seems to have opened the flood gates. Blake Shelton just announced his hard seltzer endeavor. Shay Mitchell, Gordon Ramsay, Luke Bryan all have spiked suds hitting the market. While Scott seems off to a running start, it will be interesting to see how the arrival of celebrity hard seltzer unfolds.

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