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Curious AF lands major US retail deal

In the first 12 months since entering the US market, the alcohol-free start-up is now announcing two major retail distributions, Target and Walmart.

Since their launch in 2020, entrepreneur Lisa King and the AF team quickly gained popularity as alcohol-free drinks became more and more mainstream.

Their innovative product immediately caught the attention of US eyes, and in 2023 was stocked in Jeff Bezos’ Amazon and wholesale retailer, Sprouts.

Now, one year since entering the North American market, King is excited to announce that their products are undergoing a nationwide rollout by entering Target and Walmart stores.

“Since launching in the U.S. just one year ago with Sprouts and Amazon as early retailers, our growth has been phenomenal. We are incredibly proud of what’s been achieved in terms of brand awareness, sales and distribution,” says King.

“Partnerships with major retailers like Target and Walmart will help play a critical role in introducing AF to new customers and fostering positive conversations about drinking less and normalising AF choices across the wider consumer landscape.”

Read more: Lisa King talks going global with AF Drinks

King says that this distribution deal is a huge milestone for their start-up only four years since they started.

“It signifies a pivotal moment as the category transitions from niche to mainstream and highlights the growing acceptance of the alcohol-free movement,” she adds.

AF is now available over 2100 retail doors in the US and is the fifth best-selling RTD cocktail in both alcohol and non-alcoholic categories based on national Scan Data in October 2023.

Within New Zealand, AF takes up 40 percent of market share, outperforming global brands such as Seedlip and Lyres.

With the new deal, King is forecasting AF to triple its revenue in the next 12 months.

As an industry as a whole, the non-alcoholic category is expected to be valued at $13 billion according to IWSR, the global benchmark for alcoholic beverage data.

“With such rapid growth taking place across the category, major retailers and alcohol industry operators are recognising the potential of this expanding market and are eager to capture a share of the rising demand for alcohol-free options. And it’s great to see the shift in their support,” says King.

“As we continue our expansion journey and collaborate with key players like Target and Walmart, we are excited about the future of the alcohol-free movement globally. But for now, our fundamental goal remains to make choosing not to drink ‘cool AF’.”

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