- The Natural Drinks Co has launched a campaign on Crowdcube for one month, hoping to raise an investment figure of £750,000+ in exchange for a 5.08% equity stake. The business is currently valued at £14m;
- To date the campaign has hit almost 10% of its target with over £70k secured in the first 24 hours;
- With over two years of brand development and refinement, the business is perfectly placed across three distinct sub categories to sidestep the marketplace chaos being seen by established brands as a result of the hotly anticipated sugar tax in April 2018.
“There is a huge opportunity in beverages, with consumers across multiple different audience profiles looking for products that are completely free from sugar, calories and artificial sweeteners” said Ian Minton, CEO of The Natural Drinks Company.“We are seeing leaders in the space reformulate recipes and more soft drinks now contain artificial sweetener like Acesulfame K and Sucralose (49.5%) than contain sugar (42.5%)*, but we don’t believe this is enough. We have developed a robust No sugar, No sweetener range that tastes great and is future proofed beyond meeting immediate tax savings on sugar. This is what type of alternatives consumers want for themselves and for their families”
“We have already seen our founding brand Frutree capitalise on sales from ‘no added sugar’ products and we will be looking to quickly gain strong market share in the mixer category with Skinny Tonics, which is a completely unique offering in this space “
He adds “We intend to shake up the marketplace across multiple touch points both in and out of the home. The investment achieved via Crowdcube will be focussed on targeted media, marketing and a rapid roll-out plan within retail and on-trade”
The portfolio, born out of a simple desire to create delicious, all-natural, sugar-free soft drinks made with nothing but the purest ingredients, now consists of three unique beverage brands including:
Skinny Tonic a no sugar mixer brand, is set to shake up the market as consumers look for a quality, different experience that does not compromise wellness.
A robust Marketing, PR and Social Media plan will also look to clear up ‘consumer confusion’ around terms such as ‘naturally light’, ‘no added sugar’ and what other ‘slimline’ products contain, a topic close to home for Type 1 diabetic founder, Minton.
Agua Tierra a natural, no sugar and no sweetener flavoured spring water brand available in four delicious flavours which will be targeted at young, fun and social consumers for refreshment on the go. Agua Tierra will be supported in the media by the World’s largest girl band who boast a combined social reach of 18m. They will be announced as official brand ambassadors in January 2018.
Frutree a fruit flavoured, zero sugar spring water for children which has already been soft launched and has achieved sales of over 10m bottles via national retail outlets.
Dominic Berger, CEO of the Angel Business Club who has coordinated the first round of investments for the portfolio comments, “as a leading private equity business we work with only one business in each sector and The Natural Drinks Co naturally stood out from the crowd as a young, disruptive business with a game changing business model”.
Jenny Finnegan, Head of Brand, concludes: “We are fundraising now because we believe this is the right time to invest for accelerated growth in a changing marketplace. Frutree was first conceived in early 2015 to fill what was a completely untapped gap in the kids market. We are now ahead of the game to meet customer demand for sugar free, calorie free and artificial sweetener free beverages across all of their beverage needs, delivered from a strong and aspirational brand portfolio.”