Just as I was mobilizing for a mud-slinging fest between Gatorade and POWERade, the lawsuit filed by Gatorade on Monday has just been settled. This is the news release that was issued by Gatorade just moments ago:
PepsiCo's Gatorade announced today that it has reached an out-of-court settlement with Coca-Cola resolving the lawsuit filed on Monday in Chicago's U.S. District Court. The move follows Coca-Cola's agreement to immdiately terminate the airing of one POWERade Option TV commercial and modify the language in the second ad to address the concerns expressed in the lawsuit relating to the carbohydrate calorie content and relative benefits of Gatorade and POWERade Option.
"Our primary concern is to ensure that consumers are accurately informed about the benefits of a functional sports drink, and we are satisfied with POWERade Option's decision," said Cindy Alston, vice president, equity development and communications for Gatorade.
POWERade Option has immediately stopped airing its "Drag Race" commercial, which was cited by Gatorade as containing inaccurate information. POWERade Option also agreed to modify its second commercial, called "Laces," with respect to the carbohydrate calorie content and relative energy benefits of the two products. In addition, POWERade Option will submit the revised "Laces" ad to an expedited review by the Better Business Bureau's National Advertising Division (NAD), which already recommended earlier this year that POWERade Option 'clearly and conspicuously' disclose the product does not provide the energy benefits that Gatorade delivers."
That's it. It's over. And although the entire episode last less than three days, I think it's safe to say that this is the biggest point of tension between the two sports drink makers since the NASCAR Victory Lane debacle a couple years ago.