July 21, 2012 8:50 am Canada…
A little bit of Jersey has seeped into Canada’s water supply.
Three cast members from the Real Housewives of New Jersey have launched a bottled water product called BLK in the Canadian market.
BLK, a mineral-infused water that’s black in colour, made its official Canadian debut on Thursday, July 19. To mark the occasion, Housewife Jacqueline Laurita and three other cast members threw a party at Toronto’s Dolce Social Ballroom.
“Unmask the Night will include music, hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, raffle prizes, dancing and more. Our presenting sponsor, blk. beverages, is owned by well-known celebrities as seen on the show THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY! We are launching their product blk. water to Canada and there will be a strong media presence attending the event as well as celebrity guest appearances from cast members of the show!!”
Tickets are regular $40.00 but for a limited time only you can get them for $30.00 if you type in the coupon code EARLYBIRD. There are also a limited number of Meet & Greet tickets on sale now for $50.00 that will allow you the opportunity to go into the VIP area and meet and take pictures with the cast members of the RHONJ!
While Laurita helps promote the beverage, she says she’s not directly involved in the business. Laurita’s husband Chris is BLK’s CEO and her nephews Chris and Albie Menzo (sons of Housewife Caroline Menzo) are also employees.
“They really didn’t want it to be a housewife thing,” Laurita says. “They don’t want people to show up for me to sign something then never come back.”
Still, Laurita and her husband are quick to admit that exposure on the show has helped market BLK.
“The platform that we have is amazing,” Chris Laurita says. “We reach millions and millions of people around the world. We’re not discounting that.”
Of the drink itself, Laurita says he was originally thrown off by the idea of drinking black water. “Most people react the same way I did,” he says. “You look at it and say, ‘Why is it black and why would I drink that?’”
“I think Coca-Cola had the same problem when they first launched their soda,” Laurita says. “The reality is there are a lot of drinks out there. Some are purple, some pink, blue and green. Ours is black.”
“But our drink is a healthy alternative,” he says. “There are no carbs, sugar, calories or caffeine.”
BLK initially had a rocky relationship with Canada. A Canadian design firm called Creative Thinkers claims it had an agreement to sell the product —then called Blackwater—with creators Jackie and Louise Wilke, before the Menzo and Laurita families were involved.
“Jackie and Louise were talking to [Creative Thinkers] prior to us meeting,” explains Chris Laurita. “Their deal didn’t work out.”
“They were selling product in the U.S. with the Blackwater name on it,” he continues. “We sued them and they responded to our lawsuit. Long story short, it’s settled. It settled out of court.”
A spokesperson for Pillsbury Law, the firm that represented Creative Thinkers, refused to comment on the Blackwater case.