MOORESTOWN, N.J. —BKON, a beverage technology company with a transformative extraction process called RAIN (Reverse Atmospheric Infusion) has secured a $3 million Series-A investment led by GoodWest Industries, a national aseptic beverage packaging company based in Douglasville, Pa.
“The industry demand for RAIN brewed cold coffee has grown significantly this year as a result of our shelf-stable breakthrough,” said Dean Vastardis, CEO and Co-Founder of BKON. “With this investment, BKON is expanding its production capacity and enhancing its extraction capabilities so brands can commercialize higher strength coffee concentrates with RAIN’s proprietary flavor advantages.”
The next generation of BKON’s industrial Storm brewing system will quadruple the output of its facility and extend BKON’s licensing business for international expansion. Increased concentration levels will enable the commercialization of Coldstretto™ as a means for brands to innovate cold coffee espresso consumer products.
Awarded 25 patents, BKON’s RAIN innovation has transformed the flavor quality and scalability of cold coffee beverages. Originally a basement start-up, BKON is now helping a growing number of America’s leading coffee brands innovate their cold coffee business from its New Jersey production facility and headquarters.
Comprising over $25 billion in annual sales, cold coffee is the most consumed natural refreshment beverage and the largest functional beverage in America. Yet, while cold coffee’s +7% compounded annual growth rate is expected to continue, factors are obstructing a greater potential.
“The quality limitations of shelf stable coffee have forced brands to either compromise flavor or surrender to the constraints and added costs of refrigerated supply chains,” said Lou Vastardis, BKON’s Chief of Sales & Marketing and Co-Founder. “BKON’s innovation leap eliminates these obstacles, so brands can grow their coffee beverage business with the flavor consistency and distribution reach seen in soft drink companies.”
As a result, and despite the COVID disruption, BKON grew its cold coffee brewing business by 300% in 2020 with 16 regional and national coffee brands, including Allegro Coffee, a subsidiary of Whole Foods Market.
“In all my years of experience, I have never witnessed a company execute its commercialization plans with the vigor and win record like BKON,” said Rick Lawlor, Executive Chairman of GoodWest Industries. “GoodWest was eager to lead this investment in order to accelerate BKON’s continued growth.”
As a new addition to BKON’s Board of Directors, Mr. Lawlor brings a deep understanding of manufacturing and a track record in growing successful enterprises. Prior to his Executive Chairman appointment, Mr. Lawlor served as GoodWest’s Chief Executive Officer where he led significant revenue growth over the past 4 years.
BKON’s existing investors also have increased their involvement as part of this growth phase. Most notably, Calvin H. Knowlton, PhD, CEO and Chairman of Tabula Rasa HealthCare (NASDAQ:TRHC) has been named BKON’s Chairman of the Board. Dr. Knowlton’s experience growing organizations to successful large-scale and public enterprises will be instrumental to BKON’s evolution. His business leadership accolades include the 2003 and the 2013 Ernest and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Greater Philadelphia Region, and the 2004 Walter M. Aikman Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
“BKON has an exceptional innovation and fantastic entrepreneurial story,” said Dr. Knowlton. “I am enthusiastic about lending what can be leveraged from my own entrepreneurial journey to assist in accelerating the organization’s strategic trajectory.”
At BKON, we believe consumers deserve beverages with unforgettable, vivid flavor experiences. We are relentlessly focused on innovating craft refreshment with our patented RAIN® (Reverse Atmospheric Infusion®) technology. RAIN enhances flavor quality, streamlines the production process and extends product stability. Through the creation of our RAIN-powered STORM® brewer, BKON helps beverage brands commercialize cold coffee products from our New Jersey production facility and through licensing arrangements. RAIN has grown into a leading technology that sets beverage brands apart by innovating their cold coffee business. The Purest Flavors Come from RAIN®. For more information visit www.bkonbrew.com. Stay connected on Instagram @bkonbrew.
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