Danone Manifesto Ventures is a fund set up by the French food giant in order to invest in entrepreneurial companies that are presently emerging as a threat to bigger market players. The last article we covered on Danone Manifesto Ventures saw the fund investing in Yooji, an organic baby foods manufacturer. In the latest news, Danone has invested in Hawaiian ocean water brand, Kona Deep.
The owner of Evian and Volvo, and the 3rd largest bottled water manufacturer in the world, Danone, with its investment in Kona Deep, demonstrates how far multinationals will go in order to expand and diversify.
Launched in 2015, Kona Deep sources water 3,000 feet beneath the ocean’s surface from a deep ocean current off the coast of Hawaii. The company claims that due to its source, the water contains a unique blend of electrolytes and components that make it more hydrating than mineral water. The water is pumped from 3000 feet under water and then desalinated using reverse osmosis.
The company, subsequently, is charging a hefty premium for the water. A 12 1-litre bottle case of Kona Deep sells for a whopping $33, three times the price of Evian.
Danone has taken a minority stake in the $5.5 million financing scheme by Kona Deep Corp., along with Grand Crossing Capital and local Hawaiian backers of the brand. This backing by Danone can help Kona Deep tap into its experience with eco-friendly packaging and community management.
Danone’s funding initiative looks to provide financial and operational support to companies all over the globe by giving them access to their widespread teams and information. However, these benefits do not come with chains, and the startups are given freedom to grow at their own pace, in their own ways.