CHICAGO — The acquisition environment for beverage brands has heated up in recent months. Deals by The Coca-Cola Co., Peet's Coffee and others have several drinks changing hands and expanding their reach. Here are five deals we're watching ...
1. Brands Within Reach
New Age Beverages Corp., a Colorado-based organic and natural products company, acquired Brands Within Reach Inc. (BWR) on July 12. BWR is a New York-based marketing, sales and distribution company. It owns licensing and distribution rights in the United States for healthy-positioned and fast-growing beverages such as Nestea ready to drink teas, Volvic Natural Spring Water, Illy ready-to-drink coffee in retail channels, Evian Natural Spring Water in the natural channel and Found Sparkling beverages, among others.
Consideration for the transaction was $2.5 million, which was used to eliminate 100% of BWR’s debt, plus a $500,000 payment to the sellers. The global company will remain based in Denver, with major operations in Shanghai, Tokyo, Taipei, Stockholm, Munich and Utah. BWR will be fully integrated into New Age, and a new North American operations location will be established in New York at BWR’s current offices, according to the company.
2. Revive Kombucha
Peet’s Coffee has acquired a majority stake in Revive Kombucha, a craft brewery based in Petaluma, Calif. Revive offers an array of naturally fermented, organic, non-GMO, fair trade certified, ethically sourced and raw bottled and on tap kombucha. Peet’s expects to expand the Revive market reach in on-premise, grocery and Peet’s coffee bar locations. Revive’s latest launch is Revive Sparkling Kombucha. Available in 12-ounce cans, Revive Sparkling is light and refreshing, according to the company, with 5 grams of sugar and 20 calories per can. It’s available in four flavors: Mango Orange, Cherry Hibiscus, Strawberry Lemon and Citrus Ginger.
3. Neo Superwater
In February, Betta4U Brands Inc. acquired high-pH alkaline bottled-water company Neo Water. Founded in 2011 by health and wellness entrepreneur Ben Behrouzi, Neo Water was one of the first high-pH alkaline bottled-water brands to achieve national distribution. Neo Water is primarily distributed by UNFI, KeHe and select direct-store delivery distributors to retailers across natural, grocery, convenience, wellness and specialty channels of trade.
The Coca-Cola Co. bought the official beverage of the state of Maine. Moxie soda previously was owned by one of Coca-Cola Co.'s independent bottlers, Coca-Cola of Northern New England. More than 100 years old, the Moxie soda brand has been a popular regional brand in New England for decades and is the official soft drink of Maine, according to its website. The brand is now part of Coca-Cola Co.'s Venturing & Emerging Brands group.
All Market Inc., maker of Vita Coco Coconut Water, acquired natural energy-drink brand Runa.
“We’ve spent 14 years at Vita Coco creating a category and building an iconic brand. We’re confident that we’re in the perfect position to replicate that success with Runa,” said Vita Coco co-founder and CEO Michael Kirban. “When we look at the established categories of beverage, one of the greatest opportunities is in energy drinks. Most energy drinks are nothing more than functional carbonated soft drinks and the appeal of sugary beverages continues to decline. Runa’s proposition is different and authentic, and we believe that consumers around the world are ready to leave behind conventional energy drinks with synthetic ingredients and unnecessary additives for healthier alternatives like Runa.”