In part one of our mid-year report, BevNET CEO John Craven and BevNET Editor-in-Chief Jeff Klineman examined the evolution of several emerging categories and brands during the first half of 2014. In part of two of our video segment, the pair discusses investment deals seen in the non-alcoholic beverage business over the past six months and offer predictions on what’s to come for growth categories and their impact on consumer awareness, sales and distribution.
While the industry saw no true blockbuster acquisition deals, Craven and Klineman look at several expansion-focused investments in early-stage and developing beverage companies, including Suja, Spindrift, Essentia and Kevita.
Klineman also pointed to investment plays in infrastructure and technology, noting the investment by Coca-Cola Co. Venturing and Emerging Brands (VEB) unit into incubation house L.A. Libations as well as that of Coke’s equity stake and partnership with Keurig Green Mountain, which is planning to a introduce a new cold drink version of its popular pod-based, at-home beverage system.
As for what’s to come in second half of the year, Craven and Klineman offer their take on the acceleration of the cold-pressed juice category and strategies for companies in the space, as well as the potential for new strategic involvement in the space from beverage giants such as Coke and PepsiCo. The pair also discuss the sustained growth of coconut water and how established and new companies alike are using innovation in flavor and packaging as way to increase consumer interest in the category.