BevNET Live: Defying Financial Detours

Eric Skae

Eric Skae

Entrepreneurs would love a smooth path to success, but the large potential rewards of the beverage business are proportional to the heavy risk levels. In other words, detours aren’t just a possibility, they are likely, and they have financial ramifications.

Those detours and ramifications don’t have to mean the end to the enterprise; however, they do mean that options must be evaluated. Companies have “gone dark,” muddled on until new financing could be found, adjusted their perspective, found a partner. Regardless of cause, a process for thinking through strategic options when faced with financial difficulty is one of the most important skills an entrepreneur can develop.

That’s why BevNET is featuring a set of case studies involving the Bricktown Group and General Capital Partners as part of BevNET Live in Manhattan. The Bricktown Group is headed by Eric Skae, the founder and former CEO of New Leaf Tea, and General Capital Partners is headed by investor Greg Barrow. Working together, the two men have evaluated special situations not just for New Leaf but for several other food and beverage companies in an effort to find the best possible result set for the founders, companies and investors involved.

Through the lens of past beverage companies they have worked with, Barrow and Skae will lay out potential and ultimately final options that founders considered in order to show BevNET Live attendees the evaluative thought process involved in making the best possible financial decisions during tough times. Most beverage cases are unique, but that doesn’t mean the solutions, or means to getting to those solutions are equally so, and this presentation will offer some best practices for achieving favorable results.

About BevNET Live

BevNET Live Summer ’14 is just one month away! Hundreds of attendees — including beverage companies, investors, distributors, retailers and suppliers — are already signed up for the event, which takes place on May 14 & 15 at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York City. As the premier business and networking conference for the beverage industry, BevNET Live offers an unparalleled opportunity for beverage entrepreneurs of all stages to gain valuable information on current trends in financing, product development, distribution, retailing and much more. The conference will feature a stellar lineup of presentations and panels loaded with industry experts and veteran entrepreneurs as well as ample opportunities for networking, sampling, and strategy development.

Register for BevNET Live Summer ‘14 >>

About Eric Skae

Eric Skae, founder of the Bricktown Group, brings 25 years of experience in general management and brand building of emerging growth food, beverage, and nutraceutical companies. He has managed and owned companies in both the public and private sectors.

In the past Eric served as Chairman and CEO of New Leaf Brands, a brand which he founded. In 2009 he engineered the sale of Lifetime Vitamins to Nutraceutical Inc. He has also served as owner/managing partner of Iceland Spring Water, which he exited in 2008. Eric spent twenty years in the beverage industry working in senior-level general management, sales, marketing and distribution roles with Naked Juice, Fresh Samantha, Hansen’s and Arizona Tea. Eric began his career in the food and beverage business as a distributor in Orlando, Florida.

About Greg Barrow

Greg Barrow is the founder and managing director of General Capital Partners (GCP) and has an extensive background in business leadership, entrepreneurship and investment banking. Greg founded GCP in April of 2002 to leverage his experience in the distressed marketplace and has transitioned the firm into a preeminent player in the middle market in a variety of industries including manufacturing, real estate, consumer products, and energy/natural resources. In 2011, GCP shifted its focus to the natural food and beverage industry. Since then, GCP and the Bricktown Group have worked together to leverage their food and beverage industry expertise with their innovate approach to closing deals quickly while maximizing value.

Greg has led and completed well over 100 transactions valued at over one billion dollars. His expertise has been featured in media outlets such as Bloomberg, Dow Jones, MSN Money, The Deal, Denver Business Journal and he is a frequent speaker for the Turnaround Management Association.  From 1991 to 1999, Greg was the founder and CEO of Peak Resources, Inc., an IBM Business Partner providing information systems and solutions to Fortune 1000 companies.  Greg received a B.S. in Business Administration with emphasis in Computer Science and Accounting from Washington & Lee University.