BevNET Live Livestream Studio: Holy Kombucha
Industry All-Stars Have Spoken at BevNET Live
Co-Founder & CEO, Vita Coco
President & CEO, Peet's Coffee
Dave joined Peet's Coffee as President and Chief Executive Officer in January 2013. He leads the company’s 5,000 employees and business across all channels—Retail, CPG, Food Service, Office, and eCommerce. Prior to joining the company, he served as President of North America for Weight Watchers International, where he led the company’s $1.3 Billion business and 20,000 employees. During his three-year tenure, he strengthened the brand and broadened its relevancy with new advertising campaigns, a modernized retail experience, and launched a new B2B/Healthcare business. Dave spent the prior 20 years at PepsiCo, and was the first person ever to ascend to CMO for Pepsi-Cola North America from an entry-level marketing position. In this position, he led all brand marketing, product and packaging innovation, digital marketing, consumer promotions, sports marketing and consumer insights. Dave received an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA in History, cum laude, from Middlebury College. He lives in the Bay Area with his wife, their four children and two rambunctious golden retrievers. When not at the office, he enjoys coaching his children in lacrosse and often escapes to Lake Tahoe to indulge in the occasional snowboarding. Favorite Peet’s beverage: Cafe au Lait.
Founder & CEO, Hint Inc.
Co-Founder & Chief Organic Optimist, Stonyfield Farm
Gary Hirshberg is Co-Founder and Chief Organic Optimist of Stonyfield Farm, the world’s leading organic yogurt producer, and the author of Stirring It Up: How to Make Money and Save the World (Hyperion, 2008). Gary frequently speaks on topics including sustainability, organic agriculture and the profitability of green business. Gary serves on several corporate and non-profit boards, including Blue Apron, Forager, Orgain, Peak Organic Brewing, and UNreal chocolates as well as Advisory Board member for Applegate. He has received 12 honorary doctorates and numerous awards for corporate and environmental leadership including a 2015 Champion for Children Award from Mount Sinai Hospital’s Children’s Environmental Health Center and a Lifetime Achievement Award by the US EPA.
Co-Founder & CEO, Health-Ade Kombucha
Daina Trout co-founded Health-Ade Kombucha in 2012 alongside her husband, Justin Trout, and best friend, Vanessa Dew, in Los Angeles. Daina, who has Masters’ degrees in Nutrition and in Public Health from Tufts University, was working in corporate America when she decided to pursue her passion for “real” food and develop the best-tasting, highest quality kombucha on the market. Under her fearless leadership, Health-Ade has grown from a small production, artisanal item made in Daina’s tiny apartment and sold at local farmer’s markets into the fastest growing brand in the category that is now available in more than 12,000 stores and restaurants nationwide.
Co-Founder, CAVU Venture Partners
Co-Founder & Managing Director, VMG Partners
Kara co-founded VMG Partners in 2005 and focuses on all aspects of the Fund’s investment strategy, sourcing, execution, portfolio company oversight and exit management. Since its inception, VMG has partnered with entrepreneurs and management teams to provide a breadth of value-add resources in the areas of sales, marketing, branding, finance, operations and legal support which enable its partner companies to rapidly increase brand awareness, accelerate growth and build equity value. Kara serves, or has served, on the boards of babyganics, Bare Snacks, Drunk Elephant, Health Warrior, Humm Kombucha, KIND Snacks, Pirate Brands, Pretzel Crisps, Quest Nutrition, Solid Gold Pet, Sun Bum, Waggin’ Train and Vermont Smoke & Cure, among others. Kara has been an investor in emerging, lower-middle-market branded consumer companies for the last 18 years. Prior to her private equity career, Kara was an Analyst at the investment bank of Schroders plc and received her Bachelor of Arts in Economics and German from Colgate University.
President & Chief Operating Officer, Chobani
As President & Chief Operating Officer of Chobani, LLC, Tim oversees the full sprectrum of the business for America’s No.1-selling Greek Yogurt company, including the sales, marketing, legal and finance teams. Prior to Chobani, he served as Chairman, President and CEO of Nestle Waters North America Inc (NWNA) where he was responsible for the third-largest nonalcoholic beverage company in the U.S. Under Tim’s leadership, the company boasted an unrivaled portfolio of popular, quality refreshment brands with an emphasis on water as healthy hydration, with $4.3 billion in annual net sales, 8,500 employees, 29 plants and operations in more than 140 communities. After beginning his career at Procter and Gamble, Tim joined NWNA in 1988, known in its early stages as The Perrier Group of America. He spent nearly 30 years with Nestlé and was instrumental in transitioning bottled water from a niche product to the number one beverage in America. Tim serves on the boards of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER), the Business Council of Fairfield County, the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI). He is a former board member of Toronto’s nonprofit Harbourfront Corporation, the Food and Consumer Products Canada & Grocery Foundation, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Stamford and the ABA.
President, Nestlé Beverage Division
As President of the Beverage Division for Nestlé USA, John leads a portfolio of some of the nation’s best-known beverage brands comprising $2.5 billion in combined annual sales, including Nescafé® Taster’s Choice®; Nescafé® Clasico™, COFFEE-MATE ®; COFFEE-MATE natural bliss ®, and Nesquik®. Under John’s leadership the division has reinvigorated its base brands to meet the needs of consumers’ changing tastes and preferences, successfully expanding into natural and plant-based territories. John has also led the expansion of the division’s coffee portfolio through recent investments in high-potential brands like Chameleon Cold-Brew and Blue Bottle Coffee, both leading providers of premium-crafted coffee. Most recently, Nestlé reached an agreement granting it the rights to market Starbucks consumer and foodservice products globally, outside of the company’s coffee shops. John will lead the commercial collaboration with the new team’s leadership to define the roadmap for the future of Nestlé’s U.S. beverage portfolio. Since he joined Nestlé in 1995, John has held multiple positions both in the U.S. and globally. Prior to his current role, he was President of Nestlé’s Pizza & Snacking Division. Under his leadership, the Pizza Division achieved market share gains while expanding margins and innovating into new territories. John’s innovative management style, for instance, enabled the company to develop internal incubator-brands, including Outsiders Pizza. John holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science and an MBA from The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
CEO and Founder, Essentia Water
Ken Uptain is Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Essentia Water. After a successful career in construction and real estate development, Ken emerged out of semi-retirement to establish Essentia Water and bring its benefits to the mainstream. Ken had met with experts locally and globally, including Dr. Hanaoka in Japan who shared his research on the rehydration potential of ionized water, before embarking on perfecting his own proprietary ionization process. In 1998, well ahead of the industry, Ken pioneered the first ionized alkaline water offered in the U.S.
CEO & Co-Founder, La Colombe
Todd Carmichael is the co-founder and CEO of La Colombe Coffee, a premier coffee roaster and retailer. Carmichael has lived and breathed coffee for over three decades. By pressing the limits of taste, service, and most notably, coffee sourcing – visiting the world’s developing countries to responsibly gather the planet’s best coffee – Todd has converted the nation’s culinary elite into La Colombe drinkers. Along the way, he has made his company the country’s leading coffee roaster while managing it philanthropically. Fueled by Todd’s passion to push the U.S. coffee scene forward, La Colombe sits at the forefront of the ethical trade movement and regularly dabbles in new terrain, inventing ground-breaking new brewing devices and beverages, such as the first ever Draft Latte. He is also the host of two Travel Channel series, “Dangerous Grounds” and “Uncommon Grounds.”