Power drinks are a thriving and rapidly expanding market. Most target consumers are 18- to 30-year-old adults, eager to increase stamina and alertness or simply to stay up late at night. Red Bull is the brand name of an Austrian carbonated soft drink. It was presented as a power drink which fights mental and physical fatigue. 250 ml serving of the drink contains about 27 grams of sugar, B- vitamins, 1000 mg of taurine, 600 mg of glucuronolactone and 80 mg of caffeine (for comparison the average cup of coffee contains 100 mg of caffeine or as much as three cans of Coke). Red Bull is a non-alcoholic energy drink unique in composition and effects. Since the beginning of 2003 a sugar-free version of the drink is available. It is especially popular as a cocktail notably with vodka. In Ireland they prefer to drink a non-alcoholic cocktail of Red Bull and red lemonade, which is called "a kick in the bollocks".
Red Bull beverages are produced by Rauch. In 2000 in over 100 countries almost 1 billion of the slim 250ml cans were sold (260 million of them in the UK). In 2003, almost 2 billion cans were sold in over 120 countries.
Red Bull helps people indeed in the time of increased stress. It supports physical endurance, mental alertness; stimulates metabolism and increases stamina; improves the speed of reaction and concentration, and gives the feeling of well being.
For people who need to feel awake long in body and mind Red Bull is the ideal energy drink. Red Bull is essential: when a long day is over and a long night starts; on long motorways; during intensive working days when your energy reserves are emptying out; or in demanding athletic activities.
The origin of this popular power drink is rather interesting. During his journey to Thailand Dietrich Mateschitz saw how the tuk-tuk (rickshaw) drivers drank some beverage to keep them energized all the day long. After some recipe recast, and a flavor modification for the public, Red Bull was created. The name of the drink - Red Bull - descends from the English language translation of the Thai beverage "Krating Daeng". In 1984 Dietrich Mateschitz licensed the new drink in the local firm TC Pharmaceuticals who took a 51% in his firm - Red Bull GmbH.
After enormous popularity of Red Bull, there appeared hundreds of imitations on the market. Despite the fact, that its rapid success has attracted imitators, Red Bull still prevails in the power drink market (70 percent of the market share in 2003). The list of the most popular imitations includes Blue Ox, American Bull, and Mad Croc and others. Overall, in the USA market Red Bull has created a category that currently includes 125 products. Several supermarkets even have created their own house brand drinks. For instance - Tesco's Cranberry Diet Kick and ASDA's Lemon & Lime flavoured version. In addition, several celebrities have launched their own energy drinks (rap superstar Nelly's energy drink - Pimp Juice, and Lil Jon's CRUNK Juice).
Because of the numerous imitations, one of the most popular cocktails made with Red Bull, Vodka Red Bull, is often made with copies in clubs and bars. Ultimately, Red Bull North America brought several actions into court. They claimed that consumers were given another energy drink instead of Red Bull.