Food Business News - May 17, 2016 - (Page 18)

CAVU Venture Partners: Building and creating winners Investment firm's portfolio includes High Brew Coffee, Bai, Chef's Cut Real Jerky and Health-Ade Kombucha AUSTIN, TEXAS - Operators first, investors second - that's the mission of CAVU Venture Partners, a new food and beverage investment firm co-founded by three industry veterans with a focus on better-for-you consumer brands. Investments have included Bai, Health-Ade Kombucha and Chef's Cut Real Jerky. In late April, CAVU announced a $4 million investment in High Brew Coffee, an Austin-based ready-todrink cold brew coffee brand, which also landed a distribution deal with Dr Pepper Snapple Group. The name CAVU comes from a pilot's term, "ceiling and visibility unlimited," which means perfect flying conditions. "That's really what we aspire to bring to our partners and the companies we invest in," said Clayton Christopher, co-founder and partner of CAVU Venture Partners. "One of the things that I see too often is a lot of entrepreneurs are getting capital, but they're not getting smart capital." As the co-founder and former chief executive officer of Sweet Leaf Tea, 18 FOODBUSINESS NEWS ® Mr. Christopher understands firsthand the challenges of launching a brand without proper guidance. "The early capital we got with Sweet Leaf was not smart marketing executive at The Coca-Cola Co. and Glaceau. "Rohan has spent his entire life in the trenches; I've spent my entire life in the trenches," Mr. Christopher said. "We We're W big believers in the cold brew coffee category, that it's here to stay. - Clayton Christopher, CAVU Venture Partners capital," he told Food Business News. "While it was helpful to get the capital, we could have grown a lot faster and a lot more efficiently had we had more people sooner on our board and on our team that had been down that road before and had the experience." In addition to Sweet Leaf Tea, Mr. Christopher co-founded Deep Eddy Vodka and Rhythm Superfoods. Another CAVU partner and co-founder, Rohan Oza, previously was a mid-stage companies with $50 million in revenue or less, Mr. Christopher said. "What we look for is a passionate entrepreneur that has a learners' mind set versus a knower's mind set," Mr. Christopher said. "Knowers scare me. Because I used to be one once, and they're really dangerous to their business." The firm is particularly interested in better-for-you products because "we definitely believe that health and wellness is no longer an upper-class aspiration," Mr. Christopher said. Flying high with High Brew put a lot of our own money in this $160 million fund that we have, so we feel very convicted that when you have the experience that transcends the boardroom, it's a huge insurance policy. "A lot of the firms out there pride themselves on being good at picking winners, whereas we pride ourselves on building and creating winners." CAVU Venture Partners primarily invests in early- to Mr. Christopher has a personal history with David Smith, founder and c.e.o. of High Brew Coffee. The two co-founded Sweet Leaf Tea in 1998 and sold the business to Nestle Waters in 2011. "We've known each other since kindergarten," Mr. Christopher said. "We've worked all our lives together, so partnering with High Brew and David through CAVU just made great sense. David's a super-sharp business leader. He's obviously a lot smarter now than he was when May 17, 2016

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food Business News - May 17, 2016

Food Business News - May 17, 2016
Dean Foods diversifying with Friendly’s acquisition
Nutrition point of reference
Dairy Business News - Hydrocolloids – It’s all about the gel
Table of Contents
Web Contents
Editorial - Investors view food production as ripe for disruption
F.D.A. adjusts course on ‘healthy’ labeling
Doug Gillespie to lead Harvest Hill Beverage Co.
Bunge launches non-G.M.O. corn product line
JAB to acquire Krispy Kreme for $1.35 billion
CAVU Venture Partners: Building and creating winners
Hain Celestial begins restructuring effort
Hain learns tough lesson with tea revamp
Pilgrim’s Pride to enter organic chicken category
Green Giant brings giant boost to B&G Foods
Cott making leadership changes in North America and U.K.
Market Insight - Where’s the sugar?
Ingredient Trends - Flavor innovation energizes sports nutrition category
Ingredient Innovations - Ancient grains rising in product development
New Food Products
Ingredient Market Trends - U.S.D.A. issues unexpectedly bullish outlook for soybeans
Ingredient Markets
Supplier Innovations and News
Ad Index
Food Business in the News

Food Business News - May 17, 2016