Craft mixer brand Powell & Mahoney has completed its first round of outside investment, pulling in new capital from three sources, including Fenwick Brands, a middle market investor and operator focused on the consumer packaged goods space.
Powell & Mahoney co-founder and CEO Mark Mahoney said in a press release that the company plans to use the proceeds to expand distribution and build brand awareness of its all-natural, handcrafted cocktail mixers.
“As we continue the growth trajectory of Powell & Mahoney, we recognized Fenwick as a unique partner who brings deep consumer product knowledge and hands on experience as owner-operators to our team,” Mahoney said. “We are very excited about working with Fenwick to grow our business into the future.”
Powell & Mahoney produces a range of mixer products, including uniquely formulated ready-to-mix cocktail blends like its Sriracha Bloody Mary, simple syrup, lime juice and a line of mixers designed for foodservice. While the brand is one of the largest and fastest growing in the craft mixer space and sold in thousands of stores in specialty, natural and conventional grocery channels, Mahoney, who with co-founder Brian Powell, launched the brand in 2010, said that with the new funding, “now the the time to hit the gas and grow it nationally.”
Fenwick also has invested in a number of other CPG brands, including Moore’s Marinade, Planter’s Peanut Oil and Spartan Foods. As part of its investment in Powell & Mahoney, Fenwick will provide strategic consumer marketing services from its Boston, Mass. office in conjunction with Salem, Mass.-based Powell & Mahoney, according to the release.
Mahoney told BevNET that the company exceeded its initial funding goal of $1.5 million, having received investment from Fenwick, aseptic beverage manufacturer and co-packer Leahy-IFP (which produces the company’s foodservice line of mixers) and a private investor. Powell & Mahoney had initially planned to secure new funding through CircleUp, an equity crowdfunding platform that enables companies looking for capital to attract potential investors via its online portal. The company eventually funneled its investor group through CircleUp.
“As far as facilitating information, [CircleUp] was fantastic and we really liked the platform,” Mahoney said. “After the process began, we started going to some strategic partners. We took on one private investor who wants to remain anonymous. Leahy [also] invested in Powell & Mahoney. And then we had a relationship locally with someone from Fenwick Brands [who] made an introduction to president Melissa [Baker]. We decided that with those three, we were going to exceed our goal of $1.5 million in the raise. We felt fewer people would be better for us, and we didn’t want to have a lot of investors at a lower level.”
Formulated and blended in Williston, Vt. at Green Mountain Co-Pack, a custom bottling facility, Powell & Mahoney mixers are handcrafted in small batches using steam kettles. The facility is majority owned by Thirsty Ventures, a holding company operated by Mahoney. Direct involvement in the production process is something that Mahoney views as key to maintaining the authenticity and quality of the brand. It’s equally meaningful to Powell & Mahoney’s new investment partners, he said.
“Fenwick and Leahy understand how important it is that we do have vertical integration through the ownership of both brands,” Mahoney said. “It’s been critical. I think it’s one of the most important aspects of the quality and value propositions of Powell & Mahoney can bring to the marketplace at that price point.”