Red Bull GmbH: Wikis


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Red Bull GmbH
Type Private
Founded 1984
Founder(s) Dietrich Mateschitz
Chaleo Yoovidhya
Headquarters Fuschl am See, Austria
Area served Worldwide
Key people Dietrich Mateschitz
Industry Drink
Products Red Bull
Energy drinks
Revenue 2,6 billion (2006)
Operating income 1.3 billion (2006)
Net income 650 million (2006)
Employees 3,903 (2006)
Subsidiaries Red Bull Racing
Scuderia Toro Rosso
Team Red Bull
Red Bull New York
FC Red Bull Salzburg
EC Red Bull Salzburg

Red Bull GmbH is an Austrian company which sells the European adaptation of a Thai energy drink under the English translation of the Thai brand name, Red Bull. In 2006, more than 3 billion cans were sold in over 130 countries. 3,903 employees generated 2.6 billion euros in turnover. [1] The headquarters of Red Bull GmbH are located in Fuschl am See, Austria.

The co-founder of the company with a 49% stake is Dietrich Mateschitz, an Austrian entrepreneur who had the idea to introduce the drink to, and market it in Europe. Mateschitz was international marketing director for Blendax, a German toothpaste company, when he visited Thailand in 1982 and discovered that Krating Daengor translated means red bull, a Thai Energy Drink that originated in Japan, helped to cure his jet lag.[2] Between 1984 and 1987, Mateschitz worked with TC Pharmaceutical (a Blendax licensee) to adapt Krating Daeng for European audiences. At the same time Mateschitz and Chaleo, the owner of Krating Daeng, founded Red Bull GmbH; each investing $500,000 of savings and taking a 49% stake in the new company. They gave the remaining 2% to Chaleo's son Chalerm, but it was agreed that Mateschitz would run the company.[3] That left the Thais as silent partners. Red Bull GmbH launched the “Austrian” version of Red Bull in 1987, which is carbonated and not as sweet as the original Thai recipe. It is the Austrian formula that has taken almost half of the U.S. market for energy drinks, and up to 80% of the market in some other countries.

In 2006, Forbes Magazine listed Chaleo as being the 292nd richest person in the world with an estimated net worth of over $2.5 billion[4] while Mateschitz was listed at number 317.[5]


Red Bull distribution

The Red Bull company also distributes and markets a number of other drinks including Simply Cola, the Carpe Diem range of herbal soft beverages and the Sabai Wine Spritzer (the latter in association with the Thai Siam Winery in Thailand)


Initially, Red Bull distributed free cases of the drink to college students in an attempt at viral advertising. This strategy was wildly successful, resulting in the rapid proliferation of sales. Red Bull has since become known for its sleek marketing targeted at young urban professionals through various sports and entertainment based advertising campaigns. The current mottoes, "Red Bull Gives You Wings," and "No Red Bull, No Wings" are direct plays on the proposed stimulate properties of the beverage.


Sport sponsorship

Since the initial viral campaign, Red Bull's efforts have included sponsoring extreme sport events including cliff diving, BMX, skiing, flying and skateboarding. In the 1990s, Red Bull sponsored the rower Xeno Müller, who won an Olympic gold medal in the single sculls in 1996[1]. Today, Red Bull sponsors skier Tanner Hall, who won the X Games gold in half-pipe skiing. Red Bull also owns and conducts the Flugtag ("flight day" in German), a competition where entrants launch themselves off a 10 metre ramp in homemade "flying machines" into a body of water (reminiscent of the Birdman Rally); its own version of the soapbox derby called the Red Bull Soap Box Race which was recently held in Cincinnati, Ohio; the Red Bull Art of the Can Competition, an international art competition in which artists are asked to create works using the Red Bull can; and the Red Bull BC One individual breakdance competition.

Red Bull has had a sponsorship presence in a number of sports for some time, especially in the world of motor sport, with the company having a presence in the DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) especially the Abt Audi team, Dakar Rally sponsoring the VW Race Touareg Team, KTM Factory Motocross Team, Moto GP, British Superbike's (BSB) Red Bull Honda and HM Plant Red Bull Honda teams, World Rally Championship with the Skoda team run by Armin Schwarz, The SEAT team in the World Touring Car Championship, in Champ Car with Neel Jani and PKV Racing, Rhys Millen's Pontiac in Formula D, sponsoring the GP2 Series team owner by Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner, Arden International. The team previously sponsored the Sauber and Arrows Formula One teams, the Red Bull Cheever Racing Team in the IRL, and since 2007 Team Red Bull has competed in the NASCAR SprintCup. Also Red Bull is now sponsoring the Cyberathlete Professional League and its own air racing event called the Red Bull Air Race. Red Bull does not pay their athletes to wear or promote their logo. The 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge, a competition for driverless cars, was won by a student team from Stanford. The Team's robotically driven Volkswagen Touareg "Stanley", was sponsored by Red Bull.

Red Bull also has sponsored various racing drivers including NASCAR driver Brian Vickers and Formula One drivers Christian Klien, Vitantonio Liuzzi and Scott Speed. Red Bull is also sponsor to young Canadian racing prodigy Robert Wickens and teammate John Michael Edwards in the Champ Car Atlantic Series, as well as Moto GP riders Nicky Hayden and Dani Pedrosa, American Superbike (AMA) riders Eric Bostrom, Ben Bostrom and Jake Zemke and British Superbike (BSB) riders Jonathan Rea, Eugene Laverty and Ryuchi Kiyonari. Red Bull is sponsoring two new NASCAR teams under 2007; racing under the new Toyota Camry label. Aside from that, its Thai unit and its Philippine partner has been responsible in forming, licensing and funding the Red Bull Barako basketball team in the Philippine Basketball Association since 2000. It has become one of the most successful sports teams in the Philippines.

Sport ownership

Red Bull has also extended its presence to purchasing and entirely re-branding a number of sports teams.

Red Bull established Scuderia Toro Rosso in 2006 by buying the Minardi team. This followed the purchase of Jaguar to become Red Bull Racing the previous year.


In motorsport, these teams include Red Bull Racing (previously Jaguar Racing)[6] and Scuderia Toro Rosso, previously Minardi F1 Team.[7] (Scuderia Toro Rosso is Italian for Red Bull Team.) [7] Both teams have scored Grand Prix victories.

In 2006, Red Bull unveiled a NASCAR team, Red Bull Racing Team. It made its debut in the Nextel Cup Series, now known as the Sprint Cup Series, that season at Lowe's Motor Speedway.

Association football

The company has also been highly active in association football. On April 6, 2005, Red Bull bought the Austrian club SV Austria Salzburg and renamed it to Red Bull Salzburg, a move which has been heavily criticised by supporter groups within Austria and across Europe.

In 2005, Red Bull purchased the MetroStars, a team in Major League Soccer representing New York City but playing its home games in New Jersey, from Anschutz Entertainment Group and renamed the franchise; Red Bull New York is the name of the Red Bull subsidiary that operates the team, while the squad itself is known as the New York Red Bulls. The company is currently building the team a new stadium which is now scheduled to open in 2010.

In 2007, Red Bull established the lower-division Red Bull Brasil team in São Paulo.

Most recently in June 2009 the company has purchased the football licence of German fifth division club SSV Markranstädt based near Leipzig. The club will take up play in the 2009-10 season as RB Leipzig and the company has stated that their goal is to advance to play in the country's first division Bundesliga within ten years.

Ice hockey

The company purchased EC Salzburg, the city's team in the Austrian Hockey League, in 2000 and renamed it Red Bull Salzburg.

Promotional cars

In addition to sport sponsorships, Red Bull has developed the MET (Mobile Energy Team) programme. The teams consist of mostly college students, who drive specially designed Red Bull "Racers". The racers are detailed with the Red Bull logo and most carry an oversized can of Red Bull on their chassis (Suzuki Vitara, MiniCooper, SportTrac, etc.). The METs complete daily missions that include sporting events, businesses, colleges, shopping centres, etc. The Mobile Energy Team is trained to know the properties of the energy drink thoroughly and present them to consumers.

Charitable patronage

Red Bull has also been known to support events in aid of charity. For the past three years it has been a sponsor[8] of the Don't Walk Charity Fashion Show at the University of St Andrews, Fife, Scotland. Don't Walk is a student organised show which raises awareness and contributes its profits from the show and related events to a nominated charity each year. The show's go-ahead is significantly bolstered by Red Bull's sponsorship, including its provision of the Red Bull VIP area where Red Bull and its related products are handed out to attending students free, significantly promoting its image to the student population.

Promotional Aircraft

The company uses numerous historic fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft [9] in their promotions including:

  • Chance-Vought F4U-4 96995 (OE-EAS)


  1. ^ Rekord bei Red Bull, ORF online (Austrian national television), 2006
  2. ^ Selling Energy, Economist, May 9 2002
  3. ^ Soda with a buzz, Forbes, 28 March 2005
  4. ^ Billionaires, #292 Chaleo Yoovidhya, Forbes , 2006
  5. ^ Billionaires, #317 Dietrich Mateschitz, Forbes , 2006
  6. ^ Red Bull snaps up Jaguar F1 team article
  7. ^ a b Red Bull swoop for Minardi deal article
  8. ^
  9. ^ Red Bull Aircraft (airliners photo collection)

External links


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