Bang
BANG-Rainbow-Unicorn-Logo.png
The logo for Bang Energy, stylized in the Rainbow Unicorn flavor
Product typeEnergy drink
OwnerVital Pharmaceuticals
CountryUnited States
Introduced2012
TaglineFuel Your Destiny!
Websitebangenergy.com Edit this at Wikidata

Bang is an American brand of energy drinks. It is made by Vital Pharmaceuticals, a corporation located in Florida. As of 2020, Bang is the third highest selling energy drink in the United States, behind Monster and Red Bull.[1] The brand is known for its bold public image; along with sponsoring numerous influencers on social media such as TikTok and Instagram, the brand's CEO Jack Owoc has also accumulated social media attention through the beverage's popularity.[2]

History

Bang's parent company, Vital Pharmaceuticals, was founded in 1993 by Jack Owoc. It manufactures and distributes sports supplements and performance beverages under the brand name VPX. Other products distributed by the company include Redline, Noo Fuzion, and Meltdown.

In 2012, the company introduced Bang, marketed as a low sugar carbonated energy drink.[3] Bang Energy's stated mission is to make high-quality nutritional supplements backed by scientific research.[4]

In 2017, Bang Energy announced a caffeine-free variant of the beverage, using beta-alanine in place of caffeine.[5]

In 2019, the company opened a manufacturing and distribution facility in Phoenix, Arizona, which operates alongside their facility in Pembroke Pines, Florida.

In April 2020, PepsiCo entered an exclusive distribution agreement with VPX to distribute Bang in the United States.[6] On November 17, 2020, the company gave PepsiCo a notice of termination;[7] an emergency arbitrator ruled in December 2020 that Pepsi remained the exclusive distributor of Bang drinks until 2023.[8] Bang transitioned from exclusive PepsiCo distribution in June 2022.[9]

In August 2022, it was reported that Keurig Dr Pepper was in talks to purchase VPX;[10] these talks fell apart shortly after the reports surfaced.[11]

Products

The Bang energy drink lineup includes over 40 flavors. Alongside its mainline energy drink, the company also produces several other products marketed under the Bang brand and logo. These include:

Legal actions and controversy

Vital Pharmaceuticals was sued by competing energy drink manufacturer Monster Beverage, who alleged that Vital engaged in consumer deception and anti-competitive business practices. Vital countersued, alleging that Monster infringed their copyright by use of similar trade dress.[20][21]

In a separate lawsuit, Monster Beverage and Orange Bang sued Vital Pharmaceuticals for trademark infringement. Orange Bang previously sued Vital Pharmaceuticals in 2009, and the two companies settled the next year, with restrictions placed on Vital Pharmaceuticals' use of the Bang trademark, limited to "creatine-based" drinks and products sold exclusively at fitness venues such as gyms. The introduction of the "Bang Energy RTD" drink infringed on this settlement, as it contained 'Super Creatine'. The suit found that 'Super Creatine' was not actually creatine, and did not raise the body's creatine levels; an arbitrator ruled in favor of Monster and Orange Bang, with Vital Pharmaceuticals owing $175 million in damages, described as one of the largest awards in US trademark history.[22][23]

The company was sued by Sony Music in October 2021, claiming that Bang Energy's social media platforms were infringing their copyright by using their music without licensing it.[24]

In August 2022, the estate of musician Prince won a lawsuit against Bang Energy for their usage of the "Purple Rain" trademark.[25]

Vital Pharmaceuticals engaged in legal action with PepsiCo for alleged misconduct and foul play. After terminating their exclusive distribution agreement with PepsiCo, Bang alleged that PepsiCo was misrepresenting itself as the exclusive distributor of their products, and threatened lawsuits against suppliers and distributors who did not purchase Bang products directly from them.[26] An emergency arbitrator ruled in December 2020 that Pepsi remains the exclusive distributor of Bang.[8] Bang and PepsiCo mutually transitioned from their exclusive distribution agreement in June 2022, with CEO Jack Owoc claiming that "all disputes with PepsiCo have been fully settled and resolved".[9]

The brand's CEO is a supporter of former president Donald Trump,[2][27][28] and has donated $250,000 to America First Action, a super PAC endorsed by Trump.[2][27][29] Bang has received controversy for its attendance at Turning Point USA conferences, including a stunt in which the brand's marketers fired cash out of a 'money cannon' towards the audience.[30][31] The company also drew criticism for its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, ordering employees to attend a mandatory in-person meeting, a 'dance party' promoting their Redline Noo-Fusion product, without proper social distancing or security protocols.[32]

References

  1. ^ Conway, Jan (November 26, 2020). "Leading energy drink brands in the United States in 2020, based on sales (in million U.S. dollars)*". Statista.
  2. ^ a b c "How Bang Energy's flashy, neon world of influencers conquered TikTok". Morning Brew. Retrieved 2022-04-28.
  3. ^ "The Bang Revolution". May 10, 2017.
  4. ^ "About". Bang Energy. Retrieved 2019-12-27.
  5. ^ "Caffeine free Bang gets beta-alanine in place of caffeine". Stack3d. November 28, 2017.
  6. ^ Prokop, Hannah (April 28, 2020). "PepsiCo, Bang Energy Maker Enter Into Exclusive Distribution Agreement". CSP Daily News. Retrieved 2020-07-19.
  7. ^ "UPDATE - Bang Energy Terminates Distributor Partnership With PepsiCo". GlobeNewswire News Room. November 17, 2020.
  8. ^ a b "PepsiCo remains 'exclusive distributor' of Bang Energy drinks, arbitrator rules".
  9. ^ a b "Bang to transition from PepsiCo distribution deal in favor of new DSD partners". Food Dive. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  10. ^ "Keurig Dr Pepper Is in Talks to Buy Bang Energy Owner VPX". Bloomberg.com. 2022-08-18. Retrieved 2022-08-18.
  11. ^ "Keurig Dr Pepper's Talks With Bang Energy Fall Apart". Bloomberg.com. 2022-08-19. Retrieved 2022-09-02.
  12. ^ "Natural Bang® Energy Drinks 12 Pack | 16oz Cans | Bang-Energy.com".
  13. ^ "Bang Keto Coffee 12 Pack".
  14. ^ "Bang® Shots 12 Pack * 3 oz Creatine BCAA Aminos, B-Vitamins & CoQ10 | Bang-Energy.com".
  15. ^ "Bang® Pre-Workout Master Blaster® 20 Servings | Supplements | Bang-Energy.com".
  16. ^ "Bang® Sweet Tea 12-Pack - Super Creatine® - No Sugar 16 oz - 300 mg Caffeine | Bang-Energy.com".
  17. ^ "Bang ThermIQ® - Rapid Body Redesign™ Matrix | Bang-Energy.com".
  18. ^ "First Look: Bang Energy's MIXX Hard Seltzer". 12 December 2020.
  19. ^ "VOOZ™ Hydration Sensation™ - 12-pack".
  20. ^ Peltz, James F. (3 April 2019). "Monster energy drink maker expands lawsuit against rival Bang". LA Times. Retrieved 28 December 2019.
  21. ^ Cohen, Howard. "Monster Energy sues FL drink company over Bang's health claims". Miami Herald. Retrieved 28 December 2019.
  22. ^ Brittain, Blake (2022-07-01). "Monster's blockbuster $175 mln trademark win against Bang Energy upheld". Reuters. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  23. ^ Wasel & Wasel Arbitrator Services Inc. - Abdulla Abuwasel (2022-07-04). "BANG for your Buck: Largest U.S. Trademark Verdict Upheld in USD 175 Million Arbitration". Lexology. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  24. ^ "Sony Music Hits Bang Energy Drink With Copyright Suit Over Influencers' Use of 132 Songs". Daily Business Review. Retrieved 2022-09-02.
  25. ^ "Purple Rain, you will NEVER be an energy drink, says Prince's estate". The A.V. Club. 2022-09-01. Retrieved 2022-09-02.
  26. ^ "Bang® Energy Sues Pepsi, Claiming Vindictive Misconduct". Bloomberg. November 25, 2020.
  27. ^ a b "Does a Portion of Each Bang Energy Sale Go Toward Trump's Campaign?". Snopes.com. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  28. ^ Eisen, Aryeh Mellman and Norman (2020-07-22). "Addressing the other COVID crisis: Corruption". Brookings. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  29. ^ A 501tax-exempt; NW, charitable organization 1300 L. St; Washington, Suite 200; Dc 20005857-0044 (2020-07-07). "Company that gave six figures to pro-Trump super PAC got PPP loan worth at least $5 million". OpenSecrets News. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  30. ^ "Cash Cannons, Election Conspiracies, and Thousands of Mask-less Teens: A Conservative Youth Orgy Takes Florida". Vanity Fair. 2020-12-21. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  31. ^ Petrizzo, Zachary (2020-12-21). "Conservatives fume after Charlie Kirk has 'Bang Girls' blast cash into TPUSA crowd". The Daily Dot. Retrieved 2022-07-10.
  32. ^ "BANG Energy Threw a Dance Party During the Coronavirus Outbreak to Launch a Drink Called 'Noo-Fusion'". www.vice.com. Retrieved 2022-07-10.