Move over Bacardi. There’s a skinny girl in town, and she isn’t going anywhere. Bethenny Frankel’s Skinnygirl Cocktails , though smaller than many alcohol brands, grew 388% between 2010 and 2011 making it the fastest-growing spirits brand in the U.S.
The brand also shows no signs of slowing down as Frankel is rapidly expanding her alcohol empire with the recent addition of Skinnygirl Sangria and White Cranberry Cosmo. She is also rolling out a collection of wines, a piña colada, and a line of naturally flavored vodkas. In August Bruce Carbonari, chairman and CEO of Fortune, said of the Skinnygirl brand, “It harnesses the megatrends of convenience, premiumization and low-calorie. And we see the brand as an excellent platform for further innovation. Skinnygirl has already become the fastest-growing spirits brand in America. We’ve already launched Skinnygirl in Canada, where it’s become the fastest-growing ready-to-serve product, and we’ve just introduced the brand’s first new product, Skinnygirl Sangria, to the U.S. market in July.”
She has figured out her niche, that is for sure. But part of the reason people want the Skinnygirl products is because Bethenny they like Bethenny’s brand. APA’s Brian Dow told Forbes, “Bethenny’s vision of who she is on- and off-camera is extremely consistent. It’s never changed,” he said. “Women, and especially moms identify with Bethenny very strongly because they are able to watch all of her ups and downs on camera—and that relationship is obviously very valuable.”
“Any product that I add to the Skinnygirl line has to be innovative, solve a problem for women, and help them to live healthier, better lives. My line is straightforward, honest, and doesn’t make false promises. I’ve turned down a multitude of product ideas from headbands to diet pills.” Frankel said if she doesn’t think she could use a product herself, then she won’t make it a part of her brand.
And her new wine addition fits right in with her brand. The Deerfield-based spirits maker will launch a line of California wines under the Skinnygirl brand. The line includes a Syrah-based blend, a Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio-based blend and a Grenache and Syrah-based rose blend. The Skinnygirl wines, which weigh in at 100 calories per 5-ounce serving, will sell for $15 per bottle starting in April, Beam spokeswoman Paula Erickson confirmed. WineSpectator.com first reported the launch. On her blog, Bethenny said the calories per serving are 15% lower than most other brands, but the average calories per 5-ounce serving for most wines is 100 calories, according to WineSpectator.com.