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Amway targets millennials with energy drink acquisition

Amway targets millennials with energy drink acquisition
Direct-selling giant acquired XS Energy from a former Amway business owner, expanding the brand’s geographic reach and strategy of connecting with young entrepreneurs.

Amway, the world’s leading direct selling corporation, has acquired the XS® Energy brand, cofounded by former Amway business owner David Vanderveen. The deal expands the brand’s geographic reach and advances Amway’s strategy of connecting with young entrepreneurs.

“According to our research, no demographic is more positive about entrepreneurship than those younger than 35, which is the precise target group for the XS brand,” said Amway Chairman Steve Van Andel. “Bringing Amway and XS together will strengthen our efforts in the years ahead and create more opportunities for aspiring business people.”

XS has made a name appealing to younger consumers through wildly successful parties, a focus on adventure and the seamless combination of work and play—traits that are increasingly essential for job satisfaction in the under-35 segment. By acquiring the XS brand, Amway will infuse the rest of its portfolio with the energy, authenticity and customer experience that has made XS so successful, while maintaining its traditional focus on entrepreneurship.  

This acquisition also links Amway more directly to the rapidly growing energy drink segment, which expanded from a $3.8 billion global business in 1999 to a $27.5 billion business in 2013 and is expected to grow annually by 13 percent until 2018, according to Euromonitor and Research and Markets.

Amway has been the exclusive distributor of XS since 2003, during which time the brand has grown to $150 million in sales each year and is now in 38 markets around the world. Over the last decade, Amway has seen particular success with its events and lifestyle branding in key growth markets like Japan and North America, where half of the business owners registered in the past year are younger than 35.

“Amway got me started in business twenty years ago and gave me the confidence to develop my own product,” said XS cofounder David Vanderveen. “I’m humbled to be partnering with Amway on the future of XS, and couldn't be happier about the opportunities we’ll create for young entrepreneurs.”

Vanderveen will join Amway as vice president and general manager for the XS brand as part of the transaction.


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