Schedule of Events (as of December 6, 2009):
(Note that speakers and times are subject to change)

DECEMBER 7, 2009
12PM – 5PM  “Beverage School”

Beverage School is a new addition to our event format and will feature a smaller, more intimate format that’s designed for people who are new to the business. It will cover tactical issues, such as finding a flavor house, co-packer, distributors, and capital.

6PM – 9PM – Best of ’09 Reception & Dinner –
Come network with attendees of BevNET Live for drinks and dinner. We’ll also be presenting the award for “Beverage Entrepreneur of the Year” as part of BevNET’s 7th annual “Best of” Awards.

DECEMBER 8, 2009

7:45: Registration

8:30: Welcome and Introductory Presentation: BevNET’s Look at the Year to Come
Presenter: John Craven, President and Founder,, Inc.

8:40:Panel: Market Overview

Dispatches from the trenches of the beverage business, featuring the marketers, suppliers, investors, distributors and retailers who are best able to report on the status of the market for entrepreneurial beverages.
Panelists: Erik Donhowe, VP Beverage Business, R&D, WILD Flavors; Phil Smallwood, Beverage Category Director, am/pm Stores; Michael Kirban, CEO, Vita Coco (All Market Inc.); Brent Knudsen, Managing Partner, Partnership Capital Growth Advisors; T.J. Louderback, President, Bay Area Beverage

9:20: Presentation: Venturing & Emerging Brands – The Coke Side of Partnership
Coke’s Venturing & Emerging Brands unit has made significant investments in a portfolio of entrepreneurial brands, putting Coke in the position of acting like an entrepreneurial company itself. VEB President Deryck J. van Rensburg discusses his group’s mix of investment, internal development, and its approach to growing, nurturing, and distributing entrepreneurial brands.
Speaking: Deryck J. van Rensburg, President, VEB Unit, Coca-Cola North America

9:50: Panel: Getting Converts and Creating Categories
This group of panelists discusses the strategies they used to take unfamiliar products, including those with new taste profiles or functional attributes, and turn them into breakout brands with devoted followings.
Panelists: Mark Rampolla, CEO, ZICO Beverages LLC; Greg Stroh and James Rouse, Co-Founders, MIX1; and Peter Bianchi, CEO, Innovative Beverage Group

10:35: Beverage Break

11:00: Panel: A Distribution Discussion
At a time when expectations are changing regarding how distributors, marketers, and retailers can support products, it is important they all communicate. This panel puts distributors and marketers in front of each other for a frank give-and-take on the state of those expectations.
Panelists: Robert Groux, President, Coast Beverage Group, T.J. Louderback, Mark Muench, CEO, Central Beverage, Kevin Watterson, President, G. Housen; Sean Nichols, VP General Sales Manager, John Lenore & Co.

11:40: Presentation: Little Package, Big Challenges
How a small bottle, a big energy boost and a clever entry point helped 5-Hour Energy snag a large parcel of energy drink real estate right out from underneath some of the biggest companies in the category.
Presenter: Manoj Bhargava, Founder and CEO, 5-Hour Energy/Living Essentials

11:55: Panel: Taking on the Big Guys
A discussion featuring the tactics of marketers who have grown their products even while facing competition from the highest levels of the industry.
Panelists: Chris Reed, Founder and CEO, REED’s Inc., Jimmy Rosenberg, President and Founder, Evolution Fresh; Steve Haley, CEO, Celsius Beverage; Manoj Bhargava

12:30: Lunch

1:30: Tasting Panel
Three entrepreneurial beverage companies get the chance to have their products critiqued by a panel of experts. Included in the discussion will be marketability, innovation, taste, design, and overall appeal.
Panelists: Hoby Buppert, Founder, BAWLS Guarana, Debbie Wildrick, SVP-Sales and Marketing, Equa Water; Bill Sipper, Partner, Cascadia Consulting Group; Sean Nichols

2:10: Presentation: Build a Conscious Brand – And Attract Investment Anyway
Sambazon’s brand has grown and succeeded in concert with its strong orientation toward environmental and social justice to the point where investors are buying into mission as much as they are buying into profit potential. How founders Ryan and Jeremy Black incorporated the triple bottom line philosophy into their company.
Presenters: Ryan Black and Jeremy Black, CEO and VP Marketing, Sambazon

2:30: Panel: Conscious Brand Summit – Challenges and Opportunities
Our speakers discuss other models of growing socially conscious brands, and the playing field for those who wish to both mission and money simultaneously.
Panelists: David Karr, Co-Founder, Guayaki Yerba Maté; Gillian Christie, CEO, Christie Communications; Rodrigo Veloso, Founder and CEO, O.N.E. One Natural Experience; Brent Knudsen, Ryan and Jeremy Black

3:10: Beverage Break

3:35: Panel: Dance Lessons For Investors
The best ways for beverage companies to raise capital — and to partner with investors in a way that matches their expectations with a company’s goals. Followed by a pair of “Shark Tank”-style business plan pitch demonstrations.
Panelists: Brian Krumrei, Principal, TSG Consumer Partners; Brent Knudsen, Andy Whitman, Managing Partner, 2x Consumer Partners Growth Partners; Tal Johnson, Managing Partner, Adventure Funds Pitch Presenters: Erik Rothchild, Founder/CEO, WheyUP; Robert Paul, Founder, Nawgan Products LLC

4:25: Presentation: Trusting Retail Partners
How an entrepreneurial brand has been able to leverage its relationship with its largest retailer, Whole Foods, to help make and implement product changes.
Presenters: Eric Schnell and Steve Kessler, Co-Founders, Steaz (Healthy Beverage Company)

4:45: Panel: Mid Course Corrections
Everyone makes mistakes. Mid-Course Corrections explores of the art of changing products and sales strategies by veteran brand marketers and consultants.
Panelists: Eric Schnell and Steve Kessler, Janet DiGiovanna, Co-Founder, DASH Advisors; Jim Tonkin, Principal, Healthy Brand Builders; Greg Steltenpohl, Founder, Adina

515: Wrapup: John Craven