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Molson Coors buys Clearly Kombucha

DBR Staff Writer Published 07 June 2018

Molson Coors has acquired US beverage maker Clearly Kombucha for an undisclosed amount.

Clearly Kombucha is a brand owned by Top Shelf Beverages. It has distribution presence across California, Colorado, Texas, Washington, Oregon and Montana. 

Clearly Kombucha will become part of Molson Coors US business, MillerCoors, integrating into its craft and specialty import division, Tenth and Blake.

Founded in 2010 by Ali Zarrow and Caleb Cargle, Clearly Kombucha makes six flavours of non-alcoholic fermented tea beverages including Asian Pear, Black Currant, Raspberry Ginger, Raspberry Lemonade, Strawberry Hibiscus and Ginger Mint Lemonade.

It is claimed that all of its cold-filtered kombuchas are certified organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, vegan and kosher.

Kombucha is considered to be one of the fastest-growing segments in packaged beverages. This beverage is projected to have a compound annual growth rate of more than 23% between 2018 and 2024.

Zarrow and Cargle will continue with their positions in the company and will report to Molson Coors global innovation team general manager, Maria del Rio.

In a Facebook post, Clearly Kombucha commented about the acquisition by Molson Coors, saying: “Rest assured we will remain heavily involved in the business, crafting authentic fermented beverages while leveraging new and exciting expertise in developing great flavors, innovation, and amplifying our portfolio of products to provide more options to more people in more places.”

Tenth and Blake president Pete Marino said: “We believe the kombucha category is in its early stages. Molson Coors, MillerCoors, and Tenth and Blake are ideally suited to help Clearly Kombucha grow in the years ahead by driving greater awareness, strengthening its brand reputation and boosting retail availability.

“Combined with Clearly Kombucha’s “passion, recipes, expertise and category insights, it becomes clear that, together, we’re poised to help write the future of this emerging category.”

Molson Coors’ division TAP Ventures had led the deal. It is the second acquisition made by TAP Ventures after acquiring a minority stake in Bhakti, a Colorado-based chai-tea company.


Image: Clearly Kombucha’s range of products. Photo: Courtesy of Top Shelf Beverages, Inc.