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Boxing superstar Canelo goes global with Tequila RTD

World Champion boxer Saúl ‘Canelo’ Álvarez is launching his Tequila-based cocktail range VMC into the US market, aimed at Mexican-Americans.

There are not many challenges (or challengers) that Canelo is yet to face inside the ring.

Whether it’s becoming the undisputed super middleweight champion against Caleb Plant, taking home the WBA, WBC, WBO, and IBF belts in victory, or becoming World Champion across four different weight divisions (Light Heavyweight, Super Middleweight, Middleweight and Super Welterweight), he has climbed to the highest echelons of the boxing world, and managed to stay there.

Now, as the end of his 11-fight contract with streaming service DAZN – a deal which netted him US$365 million – looms in October, the champ has diversified into drinks with the launch of his ready-to-drink (RTD) range of Tequila cocktails.

The range, called VMC, first came to market in Canelo’s home country of Mexico last year via craft spirits company Casa Lumbre, and this month sees its debut in the US; the world’s biggest market for RTDs.

VMC stands for ‘Viva Mexico Cabrones’, which according to the brand is an “exclamation of pride and celebration in Mexico”.

Made using blue agave grown in Jalisco, where Canelo grew up, the product is available in three flavours; Paloma (grapefruit), Jamaica Hibiscus and Margarita.

“Our roots bring us to where we all are at the moment. It is that same spirit that will take us to where we want to go,” says the boxer.

“Today a dream comes to fruition, demonstrating that we are unique and ready to celebrate with the strength that unites us.”

VMC is a partnership between Canelo, Spirit of Gallo and Casa Lumbre.

Speaking of the imminent US launch, Britt West, senior vice president and general manager of Spirit of Gallo says: “VMC was created and first launched in Mexico led by our partners at Casa Lumbre, and it was a huge success among Canelo’s fans.

“We are confident that VMC will capture the hearts and palates of Mexican and Mexican-American consumers in the United States. We are thrilled to embark in this journey together with Canelo.”

The RTD range’s initial release is planned for “select markets with large Mexican-American populations” and is the first canned cocktail to be aimed primarily at the Mexican audience in the US.

The Hispanic population is the second largest in America as well as the fastest-growing demographic.

“Tequila is not only Mexico’s spirit of choice but is also the third largest and fastest-growing major spirit category in the US,” says West. “Pre-mixed cocktails and flavoured alcohol beverages are driving growth in the market, but until now there hasn’t been an authentic Mexican offering in this category. VMC is here to change that.”

During his boxing career, Canelo has triumphed over contenders including Amir Khan, Gennady Golovkin, Billy Joe Saunders, Callum Smith, John Ryder and Julio César Chávez Jr. His only two losses in 63 fights have been to Dimitry Bivol and Floyd Mayweather.

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