Revive Kombucha finds ‘evergreen path’ to growth with Peet’s Coffee partnership, $7.5M financing

By Elizabeth Crawford

- Last updated on GMT

Revive Kombucha grows with Peet’s Coffee partnership, $7.5M financing

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Seeking an “evergreen path” to growth while still protecting its mission, Revive Kombucha gave a seat on its board of directors to a top executive at Peet’s Coffee, which also led a $7.5 million series B financing round for the brand, according to company co-founder Sean Lovett.

“Having additional support [on the board] from Eric Lauterbach, president of consumer and chairman of Coldcraft at Peet’s Coffee, means that we can borrow from his incredible expertise to help get us to that next level,”​ while also protecting Revive’s mission, Lovett told FoodNavigator-USA.

He explained: “Revive is very much a mission-driven company and Peet’s is a local company that is culturally aligned with the brand. This new relationship with Peet’s Coffee & Tea, a beloved San Francisco brand, will provide Revive with a support system to fulfill our mission and offer millions of people a healthier alternative to sugary soda and energy drinks.”

Revive’s mission and the shared culture with Peet’s also is based on a “real DIY, ‘maker’ mentality,”​ that is reflected in Revive’s devotion to its work and the team’s problem-solving attitude, Lovett said.

“Early on in our growth, our core OG crew was working 80 plus hours a week – putting in serious 100 hour weeks even. Like a typical startup, we’re agile and lean and move fast when we need to. If something new happens that we’ve never had to deal with – as with any young company – and we don’t have a process in place, we figure out as we go along and create the process while we’re solving a problem. We also iterate quickly on feedback from the production crew and from customers. It’s truly a problem-solving, startup culture,”​ he explained.

The only difference in this approach now is that Revive also can turn to Peet’s Lauterbach for advice on different iterations or responding to new developments.

In addition, the partnership, “provides excellent validation for the category and Revive itself within the industry,”​ Lovett said.

Expanding distribution

Beyond lending Lauterbach’s expertise to Revive, Peet’s also led a series B financing round for Revive, which will allow the kombucha company to “reinforce what we’ve already been doing with some updated brewing and bottling equipment, fill out existing staff in a few places where we’ve been running lean and expand the sales and marketing team to support distribution,”​ Lovett said.

In terms of distribution, the partnership and funding will give Revive access to Peet’s direct-store-delivery Coldcraft network, which assures “absolute product freshness and super taste,”​ according to a press release. It also will expand Revive’s reach through California to more than 1,600 food service, grocery and Peet’s coffeebar locations.

Lovett says this “white glove”​ delivery service complements Revive’s existing direct-store-delivery service, which already brings the company’s kombucha to Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, The Fresh Market, Wegmans and Safeway in nearly all 50 states.

Protecting its startup culture

As Revive grows, Lovett says the company would like to keep the nimble startup approach it has used successfully so far “while making sure everyone has the support they need, whether that’s equipment, team members, etc.”

He added: “The future is about refining and improving on what we’re already doing in the brewhouse and with the rest of the team. Rather than trying to radically change anything, we’re reinforcing what has worked for us and looking to build a stronger investment.”

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