My Goodness: Jeremy Martin

The milk drinks company shaking up the market


Drinking milk and sporting endeavour once went hand in hand. The familiar white moustache atop the lip of the Cup Final goalscorer was as common as a post-match fag. Now it’s all isotonic drinks and power bars, so what is My Goodness doing selling milk-based nutrition drinks?

And how about promoting its For Goodness Shakes brand as “masculine, athletic and heroic”, in the words of co-founder Jeremy Martin (above, right)? A £3m turnover, shelf space in supermarket chains and projections of £45m three years down the line suggest the calcium-rich white stuff is making a comeback, albeit bigger and bolder, boosted with vitamins and nutrients and strictly ‘not for girls’.

Only six months after My Goodness’ incorporation, Tesco was lured by the first men-only health brand and decided to trial the product. Hot on its heels came Sainsbury’s, Asda, Somerfield and Co-op, and the business has been on an upward curve ever since.

 

Success has come from the focus of founders Jeremy Martin and Stuart Jeffreys, who boast sales and marketing backgrounds at L’Oreal. “But the focus means you have to have the courage to avoid certain things,” Martin says. “So Tesco stats could show that women are drinking the product and Tesco are saying ‘Why don’t you develop For Goodness Shakes for girls?’ But we’re not going to get distracted. We know about guys – that’s our strength and we’ll keep working at that.”

As a result, next year five new For Goodness Shakes will join the four varieties already on shelves. And the success of the first organic shake has encouraged the company to launch more organic products. Masculine, heroic… and organic? “We see the dairy beverage market as a really exciting destination for soft drinks,” Martin says, pointing out the UK lags behind other countries: “On the continent or in Australia, there’s some sexy milk drinks out there.” The company aims to roll out further products aimed at a different audience, but “they would all play to the strengths of dairy”.

For now, the focus is on the flagship brand, for which turnover has trebled every year since the 2004 launch, boosted by newspaper promotions and testimonials from athletes such as GB decathlete Dean Macey. Martin says: “Lucozade now sells £250m of drinks every year. We can see a brand worth between £50-100m. And we’re on track to do that within three years.

“Only 7% of the UK drinks dairy products at the moment. There’s a whole load of other supermarkets we haven’t cracked yet. And it would be nice to be in military institutions or available to paramedics, the police force, firefighters. We haven’t tackled the independent sector yet; we haven’t touched Europe.” Managing the brand will remain key. “I want guys to pick up the product and say, ‘I’ve had a hard, physical day and this will help me recover.'”

Keep an eye on those top lips.

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: My Goodness Ltd

Launched: 2004

Founders: Stuart Jeffreys and Jeremy Martin

Employees: 11

Turnover: ?3m

Website: www.forgoodness shakes.com

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