So Good So You Raises $14.5M to Grow Juice Shot Business
Refrigerated health shots are an emerging subset of the functional beverage category that includes cold pressed juices and Kombucha. Minneapolis-based So Good So You is already the category leader, and a $14.5 million infusion of growth capital announced Wednesday will help to keep it out ahead of the competition, co-founder Rita Katona said.
The series C round was led by Prelude Growth Partners, a New York-based firm whose current investments include other high-growth, health-focused consumer brands like Banza and 8Greens. It’s a big jump from two previous funding rounds for So Good So You, the last of which was in the neighborhood of $1.5 million according to reports.
“The wellness shot category is growing exponentially due to consumers’ rising demand for convenient, functional product offerings with clean, plant-based ingredients,” Prelude co-founder and managing partner Neda Daneshzadeh said in a statement. She added that Prelude was drawn to So Good So You’s reach with millennials and proprietary research that shows the brand has the highest repeat purchase rate in its category.
So Good So You’s sales jumped 380 percent over the last 18 months, Katona said in an interview Tuesday. She points to rising consumer demand for immune-boosting products. Covid-19 has only accelerated the trend, but the company hit profitability before the pandemic, in July 2019.
Founded in 2014 by Katona, a former Target exec, and her serial entrepreneur husband Eric Hall, So Good So You started out as a downtown Minneapolis juice bar and found its surprise hit in the two-ounce plant-based juice shots on its menu, each packed with natural ingredients said to support immunity, energy, sleep and other everyday functions. In 2019, Katona, who serves as chief brand and innovation officer, and Hall, now CEO, closed all three of their Minneapolis juice bars—including one within Kowalski’s Uptown store—to focus exclusively on growing as a consumer packaged goods brand. Their shots are now sold in more than 4,500 stores in 47 states including Target, Publix, Sprouts, and Safeway.
But the company has its sights set on grocery chains not yet carrying health shots. Katona wants to her brand to be first, and she wants to make So Good So You a household name.
“This is how the game is played in CPG,” Katona said. “When you have something that’s on fire, you have to keep up the growth to remain on top when the dust settles.”
In addition to adding retailers, the new funding will allow So Good So You to revisit e-commerce, which it had paused on its website to keep up with store demand. “Access and convenience” are priorities, Katona said. So is developing new taste profiles.
“Innovation is so much a part of what we do,” Katona said. “We continue to invest to make sure we’re always a step ahead.”
So Good So You manufactures all of its beverages in a renewable energy-powered, zero-waste manufacturing facility in Minneapolis. The juice shots are made with certified organic, non-GMO verified ingredients and packaged in biodegradable vials.
To hear more about the evolution of So Good So You, listen to our conversation with Rita Katona and Eric Hall on By All Means.