Co-founder Schnell Departs Steaz

Eric Schnell, co-founder and president of the Healthy Beverage Company and creator of the Steaz brand, has exited the company.

A perennial winner of BevNet’s annual “Best of” award, Schnell is the architect of Steaz’s triple-bottom-line business model. He is credited with creating the company’s tea-based product innovations including the first organic soft drink in 2002, first organic energy drink in 2007 and first complete line of organic and fair trade certified canned iced tea products in 2008. Recently, Schnell designed Steaz Zero Calorie, a line of stevia sweetened sparkling green tea products.

“I am very proud of the Steaz brand and what we were able to accomplish in the past eight years and I wish the company well in the future,” said Schnell, who retains a significant equity position in the company.

Schnell’s departure comes amidst ownership and management changes at Steaz, including majority ownership shifting to Switzerland-based private equity group Inventages.

Prior to founding Steaz, Schnell served as president of Long Life Tea and plans to continue working within the natural food and beverage industry.