Marketing Currents - Business and Marketing Current Events

Starbucks is launching an energy drink


Starbucks is giving customers new ways to perk up: a line of energy drinks called Starbucks Baya Energy and a bunch of fresh flavors in the grocery aisle. Baya will be available for purchase at stores and online starting this week, and will go on sale at US Starbucks stores on March 1. The drink comes in three flavors: mango guava, raspberry lime and pineapple passionfruit. Each 12-ounce can has 90 calories and 160 mg of caffeine. It has a suggested retail price of $2.89.

Click here to read the story at

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why would Starbucks launch an energy drink?
  2. What is brand loyalty?
  3. What is competition?
  4. Who might Starbucks be competing with in the energy drink space?
  5. How the loyalty of Starbucks customers provide them with a competitive advantage as they introduce the new energy drink product?
  6. Based on information from this story, how would you describe Starbucks’ distribution strategy?
  7. How do you think Starbucks determined the price point for the product?
  8. What is product development?
  9. What factors do you think Starbucks considered when they began developing the new product?
  10. How do you think Starbucks determined which flavors to use when launching the new product?
  11. What is differentiation? Based on information from this story, is Starbucks attempting to differentiate its new energy drink from competing products?
  12. Do you think you personally will try the new drink? Why or why not?
  13. What must happen for Starbucks’ energy drink product to be a long term success? Be prepared to discuss your answers in class.
Chris Lindauer
After working for nearly a decade in professional sports, Chris Lindauer, formed Sports Career Consulting to provide unique sports business education opportunities in and out of the classroom. In the eighteen years (and counting) that followed, Chris has inspired thousands of students to pursue their passions and explore the career of their dreams. He currently lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife, two teenage daughters and their dog.