Mana Equals Money
Today, I’d like to talk to you about Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s Mana tequila, and his alleged association with multinational distiller Diageo.
If you’ve been stalking The Rock on Instagram and social media–and who isn’t–it’s no secret that he loves tequila.
It’s also no secret that he wants his own tequila brand. You’ve probably seen photos of him tasting tequila samples at a boardroom table.
If you have any doubts about just how much The Rock loves tequila, catch any episode of Ballers on HBO.
What tequila does The Rock’s character, Spencer Strasmore, love to shoot on just about every episode?
That’s right–Don Julio!
Let me break this down for you.
We all know that The Rock does not make mistakes where his career is concerned.
Just take a look at his clothing and headphone lines with Under Armour.
There’s no doubt that The Rock wields a lot of power in Hollywood, too.
He seems to be all over television and cable with not only his own shows, but producing other shows along with the occasional return to the wrestling ring.
Not only is he a leading box office draw for the last few of years, but he has lucrative movie contracts with Disney; reboots dead properties like Jumanji and Baywatch; and even has enough clout to demand his own spin-off from the very profitable Fast and Furious franchise (Hobbs & Shaw).
Dwayne’s extremely popular across all demographics, including Millennials. (I’ll get back to that juicy tidbit shortly.)
Look, The Rock doesn’t make a move without getting paid. Every step he makes is a successful one.
Do you really think that he doesn’t have a secret endorsement agreement for product placement on Ballers with Diageo which owns the Don Julio brand?
View this post on Instagram
Test tasting a new batch of my tequila straight from our barrels in Mexico. My new brand of tequilas is a true passion venture for me that’s been years in the making. We’re almost there. Can’t wait to share it with you. This one’s for you, world… let’s have a drink. #TequilaGeneration #Innovation #Passion #Life 🥃
Rumors are swirling about where Johnson will produce Mana, and which distillery in Mexico is supplying him with samples.
My guess is that it’s Diageo. Here’s why.
What About Diageo?
The UK-based distiller just announced that at the beginning of their fiscal year, July 1, 2019, they will officially open a brand new state-of-the-art Don Julio Distillery that they have been working on since 2017.
This is nothing new for Diageo. It’s their MO.
That market has been dominated by Patron for over 10 years. However, like Patron, Casamigos has quickly lost its luster in the United States.
The darker expressions of Don Julio Reposado and Anejo have seen considerable traction since it was first seen on Ballers in 2017.
Chances are, Diageo’s distributor, Southern Glazers, has been moving containers of Don Julio Tequila since then.
Lightning Strikes Twice
Here’s what a Dwayne and Diageo deal might look like.
Entourage was loosely based on actor Mark Wahlberg’s life. Marky Mark was a producer on Entourage. Walberg is also one of the producers of Ballers.
When Mana hits the store shelves people will be taking selfies of themselves with the bottle screaming, “It’s real!”
Sales of Mana will go through the roof!
What’s The Rock’s possible payout?
Glad you asked.
Remember when I mentioned Millennials earlier?
Every major distiller is looking for ways to sell more booze to Millennials. Diageo is no different.
Diageo invented celeb-endorsed spirits marketing. Do you really think their shareholders want to lose that piece of The Rock’s action?
Having lost its bid for Jose Cuervo in 2012, and sitting on a comatose Peligroso Tequila, this could be the first time Diageo builds its own tequila brand from the ground up with minimal investment on its part.
And with an epic social media following like The Rock’s, Diageo won’t have to wait very long for a return on its investment.
Casamigos–from start-up to sell out–took only 4 years. Mana’s rise to the top shelf might take even less time.
Diageo needs the celebrity star power hat trick.
In the end, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will likely sell his half of Mana to Diageo for more than the reported 1 billion dollars it paid to George Clooney for Casamigos.