Red Bull is one of the world’s most successful brands and energy drinks. Using their famous marketing slogan, “Red Bull gives you wings,” they have managed to distribute their products worldwide.
However, do you know when the company was founded or who did it? How about the company’s infamous $13 million lawsuit? Continue reading to find answers to these questions and more interesting Red Bull facts.
1. It Is One of the Most Popular Drinks
Today, Red Bull boasts an impressive brand awareness. In the United States, statistics show that about 91% of energy drink consumers are aware of Red Bull, with 44% preferring it over the rest. It is the number one energy drink and only trails Coca-Cola and Pepsi in soft drinks ranking.
2. Red Bull Was Founded in 1984
Red Bull was founded by Dietrich Mateschitz in 1984 in Austria but was not launched until April 1, 1987. Today, estimates show over 100 billion cans of the drinks, with more than 11.5 billion sold in 2022 alone.
3. Its Origin Is Tied To Thailand
While Red Bull’s energy drink and company was founded and launched in Austria, its story originates in Thailand. In 1976, Chaleo Yoovidhya, who later co-founded Red Bull, introduced a soft drink called Krating Daeng in Thailand. Truck drivers loved it as they thought it helped them remain alert during their long travels.
When Dietrich Mateschitz traveled to Thailand in 1982 to meet with Chaleo Yoovidhya, he tasted the drink. To his surprise, he realized it helped him heal from jet lag. Two years later, Mateschitz partnered with Yoovidhya, co-finding Red Bull. They both owned 49% of the company’s shares, with Yoovidhya’s son owning the remaining 2%.
4. Red Bull Shouldn’t Be Mixed with Alcohol
Red Bull Company recommends against mixing the drink with alcohol. To emphasize the point further, Red Bull cans have the exact instructions.
5. Chaleo Yoovidhya’s Grandson Allegedly Killed a Police Officer
In 2012, Vorayuth Yoovidhya, Chaleo Yoovidhya’s grandson and Red Bull heir, allegedly killed a Thai police officer, Wichian Klanprasert, in a hit-and-run situation. Authorities thwarted the suspect’s attempts to cover up the incident, arresting and charging him with causing death with negligence and hit and run.
However, Wichian Klanprasert failed to show up in court in 2013; his lawyers told the court that he was nursing influenza in Singapore. The charges were dropped in 2020.
6. Red Bull’s Popularity Increased In The 90s
Less than 5 years after its launching, Red Bull was already finding its way overseas. The company employed Gary Smith as a co-CEO and COO. His tasks included trade marketing, product sales, finance, legal, and human resources. By the 1900s, Red Bull products had reached Slovenia, Hungary, the United States, and the United Kingdom.
7. Red Bull Has Invested In Helicopters
Red Bull owns the AH-1 Cobra attack helicopters. They call and describe themselves the “Flying Bulls,” a group of aviation enthusiasts passionate about helicopters and airplanes. Their slogan is “Passion gives you wings.”
8. Red Bull’s Ingredients Vary
As with most soft drinks, the Red Bull energy drink’s ingredients vary depending on location. However, its primary ingredients are taurine, caffeine, simple sugars, glucuronolactone, and B vitamins. For sugar-free products, sucralose and aspartame artificial sweeteners replace glucose and sucrose.
9. Red Bull Company Sells Products Other Than Energy Drinks
While the Red Bull energy drink is the company’s most popular product, others are under the same wing. For example, there is a cola drink which was introduced in 2008 known as Simply Cola. Additionally, the company invested in organic sodas in 2018. Their flavors include ginger, bitter lemon, and ginger.
10. Red Bull Threatened To Sue Redwell Brewery For Sounding Too Similar
Red Bull threatened to sue Redwell Brewery, a small malt company from Norfolk, in 2013. They argued that Redwell sounded too similar to Red Bull and that they should change it. In their view, Red Bull thought that consumers would confuse the products, which might tarnish their name and products.
11. Red Bull Relies On Sports to Advertise
Since the late 90s, Red Bull Company has been running advertisements under the slogan “Red Bull gives you wings.” The commercials usually feature specific animated characters complimented with satire and humor.
Red Bull targets sports such as Soccer, windsurfing, formula 1, motorsport, and Kayaking for a wider reach. They either sponsor athletes/teams or advertise between competition breaks as the games continue.
12. Red Bull Refused To Sponsor An Ambitious Sailor
Red Bull is famous for sponsoring athletes from different sports around the world. However, the company turned him down when sailor Andrew Bedwell was looking for a sponsor. Bedwell wanted to attempt breaking the record for the smallest boat to cross the Atlantic. Despite his confidence and ambition, Red Bull termed the move “inspirational, but mad.”
13. There Is a Misconception That Red Bull Lost A $13 Million Lawsuit for False Advertising
It is widely believed that Red Bull lost a $13 million lawsuit for false advertising. The narrative is that the Red Bull energy drink does not give users wings even though the company advertises so. While it’s true that the company had to pay the said lawsuit, it wasn’t because plaintiff Benjamin Careathers didn’t grow wings.
Instead, the lawsuit was still about false advertising but in the sense that Red Bull gave false promises about the drink’s ability to boost energy. He argued that the Red Bull energy drink did not provide more energy boost than a coffee cup.