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Captain Morgan Cannon Blast targets shooters

Diageo is targeting the shot market with the new Captain Morgan Cannon Blast, at the same time revealing plans to release a peppermint-flavoured Smirnoff vodka with “scratch and sniff” labels.

Captain Morgan Cannon Blast targets the Millennial shot market

Revealed at Diageo’s Innovation Evening last night, Captain Morgan Cannon Blast is described as an “intensely delicious shot” and is a mix of Caribbean rum, natural flavours and a “bold spice blend” of citrus, chipotle and jalapeño pepper.

The bottling, which has an abv of 35%, was released in the US six weeks ago and has been undergoing a soft launch.

Michael Ward, global head of innovation at Diageo, said: “Consumers are making more choices around mixers, and shots have really changed in the US. They used to be something for guys to show they are guys, but now men and women do them together.

“For a brand like Captain Morgan that’s about nights out, Cannon Blast is a really fun, high energy drink that we are having a lot of fun with. It demonstrates how innovations can solve consumer needs that the base brand cannot fulfill.”

Ward also said the group plans to extend its line of Smirnoff vodka flavours with a peppermint variant complete with “snatch and sniff” labels later this year.

Both Smirnoff and Captain Morgan have struggled against pricing competition in the brands’ key US market, declining 3% and 7% respectively in the market in 2014/15.

The rum brand recently launched a £1 million UK marketing campaign for its new white expression, seemingly taking aim at Bacardi’s dominance in the market. Meanwhile, Smirnoff made a bid to premiumise its image with the launch of a new design for its core No.21 Red bottle.

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