|Country of origin||United States|
Monster Energy is an energy drink introduced by Hansen Natural Corp. (HANS) in April 2002. The regular flavor comes in a black can with a green tear-shaped M logo. The company is also known for supporting many extreme sports events such as BMX, Motocross, Speedway, skateboarding and snowboarding, as well as eSports. In addition, Monster Energy promotes a number of music bands around the world, like Asking Alexandria, The Word Alive, Maximum the Hormone and Shinedown.
There are 34 different drinks under the Monster brand in North America, including its core Monster Energy line, Java Monster, Extra Strength, Import, Rehab and Muscle Monster.
Monster Energy is advertised mainly through sponsorship of sporting events, including motocross, BMX, mountain biking, snowboarding, skateboarding, car racing, speedway, and also through sponsorship of eSports events. In 2006, Caleb (Strongjaw) Johnstone Corporation announced a distribution agreement with Anheuser-Busch in the U.S. and Grupo Jumex in Mexico.
The Monster Energy logo is widely recognized among major beverages and at sponsored events. The design was created by McLean Design, a California-based strategic branding firm. The logo is composed of a vibrant large green ″M″ on field of black. The ″M″ is stylized in such a way as to imply that it is formed by the claws of a monster ripping through the can.
The caffeine content of most Monster Energy drinks is approximately 10 mg/oz (33.81 mg/100ml), or 160 mg for a 16 oz can. The packaging usually contains a warning label advising consumers against drinking more than 48 oz per day (16 oz per day in Australia). Europe does not have these warning labels. The drinks are not recommended for pregnant women or people sensitive to caffeine.
The ingredients include carbonated water, sucrose, glucose, citric acid, natural flavors, taurine, sodium citrate, color added, panax ginseng root extract, L-carnitine, caffeine, sorbic acid, benzoic acid, niacinamide, sodium chloride, glucuronolactone, inositol, guarana seed extract, pyridoxine hydrochloride, sucralose, riboflavin, maltodextrin, and cyanocobalamin.
Mercedes F1 is sponsored by Monster since 2010.
The company was endorsed by Australian touring car driver Jamie Whincup from late 2009 to 2012. The deal was cancelled abruptly for the 2013 season, when his team Triple Eight signed rival company Red Bull as title sponsor. Monster is now associated with Prodrive Racing Australia as the primary sponsor of Cameron Waters Ford Falcon FG X. His team mate, current V8 Supercar Champion, Mark Winterbottom receives minor support as do the Holden Racing Team (Since 2015). Monster is endorsed by NASCAR drivers Kyle Busch and Kurt Busch. The brand is currently the primary sponsor of the Stewart-Haas Racing number 41 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race car.
Monster has also sponsored several rally drivers and motocross riders, such as Ken Block, Liam Doran, Nani Roma, Jeremy McGrath, Chad Reed, Ryan Villopoto, Ricky Carmichael, Nate Adams and Taka Higashino.Monster Energy also sponsors multiple motocross race teams named "Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki"., and the Monster Energy Factory Yamaha motocross team, based in Hampshire, England. As of 2016, Monster has aided the return of factory Yamaha to United States as the title sponsor of the team, officially named Monster Energy/360fly/Chaparral/Yamaha Factory Racing.
Monster Energy broke into eSports with their sponsorship of Evil Geniuses, one of the premiere North American multi-gaming organizations. Monster Energy also sponsoring the professional eSports team; such as, Team EnVyUs, and Fnatic.
In June 2015, Monster Energy agreed to a sponsorship deal with Zayat Stables to sponsor the race horse American Pharoah for an undisclosed sum, rumored to be the largest single-horse advertising sponsorship to date. The deal allows the product's logo to be used on the horse's horse sheets, on jockey Victor Espinoza's shirt and boots, as well as caps and other gear worn by people around the horse. "The energy and excitement that American Pharoah has generated around the world syncs perfectly with the brand."
Controversies and warnings
Monster Beverage Corporation has been criticized for its policy to sue companies or groups which use the word "Monster" or the letter "M" in their marketing for trademark infringement. Examples include the aquarium hobbyist site MonsterFishKeepers.com, a beverage review site which published an unfavorable review of the Monster Energy drink and a Vermont microbrewery which marketed a beer named "Vermonster". Monster Beverage dropped the lawsuit against the microbrewery due to the negative publicity the lawsuit generated.
In December 2011, 14-year-old Anais Fournier died of "cardiac arrhythmia due to caffeine toxicity" after drinking two 710 ml cans of Monster Energy drink containing a combined amount of ~475 mg caffeine. Fournier had a pre-existing heart condition, as well as Ehlers–Danlos syndrome. In October 2012, her parents sued the company. Monster has insisted that its energy drink played no role in Fournier's death. A Freedom of Information Request revealed that from 2004 to 2012 the Food and Drug Administration had received reports of five deaths occurring after drinking Monster Energy. The reports did not prove a causal link between the drink and any health problems.
A common story circulating on the internet alleges that the Monster Energy logo resembles three Hebrew vavs, and that since the value for a vav in Hebrew numerology is 6, and the Biblical Number of the Beast is 666, the logo reveals Monster Energy to be a Satanic drink. The Hoax Slayer website considered this reasoning to be "stretching credibility well beyond breaking point". Similarly, TruthOrFiction.com disputes these claims as "Fiction" based on an interview with McLean Design, the design firm that created the Monster M logo on behalf of Hansen.
In August 2012, the Beastie Boys filed a lawsuit against the company for copyright infringement over Monster's use of their music in an online campaign. In 2014, a jury found Monster Beverage Corp. had infringed on Beastie Boys copyright by using songs without permission, and owed the group $1.7 million.
In March 2016, Monster filed a lawsuit to revoke the company trademark of Thunder Beast LLC (Washington, DC), a small root beer brewery, insisting the use of “beast” in the company name encroached on Monster’s trademark slogan “Unleash the Beast.” The owner of Thunder Beast, Stephen Norberg, is currently fighting Monster’s lawsuit.
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