A Thirst for Competition

Gatorade, the long-reigning champ of the billion-dollar sports-drink field, braces for a big-league challenge from Coke, Pepsi and other contenders

IN A FOUR-CITY FAST BREAK, THE Coca-Cola Co. has made the first move, flooding thousands of stores in the Southern U.S. with cans and bottles, displays and posters, backed by a TV ad campaign, to introduce its newest product, PowerAde. It's a drink made for athletes and, in the words of a Coke spokesman, "anyone who works up a sweat." At PepsiCo, Inc., plans are well under way for a summer rollout of its new drink for jocks and those who aspire to be: All Sport. Other large companies are entering the fray with similar products -- Dr Pepper/Seven-Up with a...

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