LOS ANGELES, CALIF. — Brian Liu knows a thing or two about building companies from scratch in a rough economy, identifying emerging trends and tapping into unmet market demand. As co-founder and chairman of LegalZoom, Liu turned a great idea into a great company — launching a revolution in online legal services and building the world’s leading legal document service in the middle of the early 2000s dot-com crash.
Liu’s newest venture, with beverage formulator and entrepreneur Adam Rosenfeld, is a world away from online legal services, but is targeting a similar large and untapped market. Zenify, a beverage that reduces stress and promotes calm and focus, is an alternative to the glut of energy drinks crowding the beverage market. The drink creates a calm, sharp and focused mental attitude through an expert blend of amino acids, vitamins and minerals mixed into a pleasing, calorie-conscious, carbonated beverage.
Liu is Zenify’s co-founder and chairman. He is assembling a team of beverage industry veterans to expand the company’s market exposure and distribution and to refine Zenify’s overall business strategy.
In Zenify, Liu sees a beverage with an enormous market potential in an industry dominated by calorie-heavy sodas, alcoholic beverages and caffeine-drenched energy drinks. Naturally averse to caffeine himself, Liu understands that millions of Americans find little choice in functional drinks that are uncaffeinated, non-alcoholic and calorie conscious. Zenify meets that drink demand, while also having the versatility to be consumed at work, on the weekend, before or after exercise and at any time of the day or night without having unwanted side effects.
“I’m not in college anymore, and extreme motocross just isn’t my thing. Instead, it’s about being calm, creative and living a stress free life,” said Liu. “I just loved the idea of a beverage that was not an energy drink.”
Liu knows the impact that an established and successful business veteran can have on a new start-up. When starting LegalZoom, Liu and his partners Brian Lee and Eddie Hartman knew that a recognizable name in the legal world would add legitimacy, and valuable business know-how, to their online start-up. In 2000, the trio called nationally recognized lawyer Robert Shapiro, and a founding partnership was born that helped launch the company into the national online business it is today.
Today, Liu is playing a similar role with Zenify. As chairman, he brings business expertise, industry connections and experience to Zenify that will be invaluable as the company grows.
“I am building a team of industry veterans who know beverages and share our philosophy,” said Liu. “You have to have great people that you trust and you have to have a great strategy and stick with that strategy.”
Liu’s experience starting LegalZoom in the post-dot-com-bust business environment is particularly relevant to Zenify in today’s turbulent economy.
“I think the best companies are started in tough economic times,” said Liu. “When the market is flush and people are throwing money at you, you tend to become careless and you can get a big head. It is easy to spend a lot of money and not get a lot of return. But when the economy is tight, you are forced to be smart and only invest in activities that produce positive ROI.”
Liu is confident that with a great product and a veteran management team with a track record of start-up success, Zenify will be to the beverage industry what LegalZoom is to the legal industry — a popular alternative to the status quo that taps into a large unmet market demand.
“Zenify is going to help people achieve a balance in their lives,” said Liu. “It responds to what people in today’s world want — a drink that reduces stress, while sharpening focus and promoting a calm energy. Beverage consumers are turning away from super-caffeinated, sugar-packed drinks and looking for something different.”
For more information on Zenify, go to: www.zenifyed.com