The Coca-Cola Company has sold its Zico Coconut Water brand to PowerPlant Ventures – co-led by the beverage brand’s founder – just months after it revealed plans to discontinue the drink.
The deal – which was made for an undisclosed sum – will see the premium beverage reunite with its founder Mark Rampolla under a new platform. Rampolla is the co-founder and managing partner of the growth equity fund, PowerPlant Ventures.
Founded in 2004, Zico is considered one of the original coconut water brands. With the aim to make an environmentally sustainable product that would create economic opportunities in developing countries, Zico reportedly grew into a global brand and was sold to Coca-Cola in 2013.
Under PowerPlant Ventures leadership, the brand will be renamed Zico Rising and will be led by Thomas Hicks and Alan George as CEO and CFO, respectively. Both have previously worked together on Naked Juice and Monster Energy’s natural divisions.
Back in October, Coca-Cola announced that it was retiring the Zico Coconut Water brand globally, along with a number of other drinks, in an attempt to optimise its product portfolio.
“We are incredibly proud of the results we achieved growing Zico when it was a part of the Coca-Cola family of brands and wish PowerPlant Ventures continued success as they take the Zico brand on a new journey,” said Manolo Arroyo, global chief marketing officer of The Coca-Cola Company.
Mark Rampolla said: “I respect the decision of Coca-Cola to focus on other elements of their beverage business. I still have a lot of love for Zico, and I know consumers do too. We are thrilled to acquire the company and thankful for the support from Coca-Cola.”
Dan Gluck, managing partner of PowerPlant Partners, added: “We are thrilled about the Zico transaction and believe it underscores our ability to source top tier deal flow as a result of our deep operating experience in the industry. It’s a great homecoming for the brand.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2020
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