@@img1 BOULDER, Colo. (Apr. 4, 2006) – IZZE Beverage Company, the leader in the emerging sparkling juice category, has appointed SoBe founder and former CEO John Bello to chairman of the board. Bello, who joined IZZE’s board of directors in the fall of 2005, is also a partner with Sherbrooke Capital, the venture capital group that led the $6.35 million equity-financing round for IZZE in early 2005.
“The timing is perfect for IZZE to solidify its leadership position in a changing marketplace that is demanding more healthful beverage alternatives,” said Bello. “I feel my parallel experience with SoBe in creating and growing the healthy refreshment beverage category lends itself to a future win with IZZE. With its natural positioning as a healthy product, IZZE has the brand charisma and consumer passion that can help it rise above the clutter in a competitive and crowded beverage space. I am eager to work with Todd Woloson and his team to help realize this tremendous potential.”
“I am thrilled that John Bello has agreed to step into the chairman position on our board of directors,” said IZZE co-founder and CEO Todd Woloson. “He has an incredible energy level and is willing to spend time with us as we navigate a very dynamic marketplace. Mr. Bello brings a strong execution discipline which is helping IZZE redefine the landscape of soft drinks. We are on a very steep growth trajectory right now and having the wisdom of experience around is more than helpful.”
Board member and Sherbrooke Capital managing general partner John Giannuzzi agrees. “John Bello will provide the company with strategic and tactical guidance as we grow this emerging company. His vast high-growth beverage experience is invaluable to IZZE right now.”
Bello is an operating partner at Sherbrooke Capital where he works directly with portfolio company management teams to formulate and execute strategy. In 1995, Bello founded South Beach Beverage Company, the maker of nutritionally enhanced teas and juices marketed under the brand name SoBe, where he was also CEO. The company was sold to PepsiCo in 2001 for $370 million. In 2001, Ernst and Young named Bello ‘National Entrepreneur of the Year’ in the Consumer Products category for his work with SoBe. Prior to founding SoBe, he spent 14 years at National Football League Properties, the marketing arm of the NFL. As president, Bello is credited with building NFL Properties into a sports marketing leader and creating the model by which every major sports league now operates. Bello holds an M.B.A. from the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College where he was an Edward Tuck Scholar, and graduated cum laude from Tufts University with a B.A. degree in history.
IZZE Sparkling Juice, an all-natural blend of pure fruit juice and sparkling water, is free of caffeine, artificial ingredients, high-fructose corn syrup, and all other refined sugars.
About IZZE Beverage Company: The IZZE Beverage Company was founded in 2002 by two friends who set out to create a distinctive natural beverage while contributing to a higher purpose. The IZZE Project Reach program supports and creates education-based development for farm workers and their families in the communities where IZZE buys its fruit. IZZE Sparkling Juice is now sold in Starbucks throughout the US and Canada, as well as nationally in SuperTarget and Cost Plus World Market stores. IZZE is also sold locally in Costco clubs, regular Target stores, Safeway, Whole Foods Markets, Wild Oats Markets, grocery stores, and casual and fine dining restaurants and delis across the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and South Pacific. IZZE is available in eight flavors: Sparkling Apple, Sparkling Blackberry, Sparkling Blueberry, Sparkling Clementine, Sparkling Grapefruit, Sparkling Lemon, Sparkling Pear and Sparkling Pomegranate, and is sold in 4-packs, 12-packs, single-serve 12-and 16-ounce glass bottles, and single-serve 8.4-ounce cans. For more information, visit www.izze.com.
For more information, visit www.izze.com