Today is the day when DrinkPreneur Live 2015 is held in London. We are so excited to see how many beverage industry professionals gather here to be the part of our yearly event. You have met many startups which are competitors at this year DrinkPreneur. We wanna introduce to you another startup – NIX & KIX.
The idea came to us when we were in a bar in London with friends and we all realised that the soft drink options available are rather unimpressive. We like going out but don’t always want to drink alcohol. Annoyingly, most soft drinks are overly sweet tasting or just plain boring. When we did research into this, we found that people’s taste buds are changing. Consumers want more sophisticated flavours than the typical sweet product, particularly in the on-trade sector. After some experimenting in our kitchen we discovered that cayenne can give you a natural ‘high’ in addition to a great flavour experience, so we went on a mission to create a drink range that featured it.
We entered the beverage industry after careers in Banking and Supply Chain Management respectively. At first it seemed there wasn’t any overlap at all but we increasingly find that our previously acquired business skills come in handy. Of course, there is a lot to learn – and luckily we’ve made many great friends in the industry who are happy to help and share their perspective.
Alcohol consumption in bars (and London in particular) is falling and has been doing so for some time. We feel that this is an opportunity for drink producers to come up with more interesting flavoured soft drinks that can rival alcoholic drinks in terms of taste experience.
At the same time, spice in drinks is not new – ginger beer is very popular with consumers and there are quite a few ginger beer brands out there. But the category’s growth as a whole helps new entrants like us to grow and become successful.
The kick in our drinks combined with natural fruit flavours is definitely unique. Our drinks also have over 50% less sugar in comparison to other soft drinks, particularly in the ginger beer category.
We changed manufacturer very early on and this held back growth in the first months. We’ve now moved to a new manufacturer that can grow with us. It was also challenging to take recipes which were created on the kitchen table and scale them up in a cost-effective way. One of our top selling flavours – blood orange and ginger – has had to become a seasonal product as we weren’t able to produce them on a large scale in a cost-efficient way.
Lots of feedback from industry professionals and also getting to know other drinks brands and taste their products too.
Talk to as many people as possible but always take what they say with a pinch of salt.
For more information about NIX & KIX visit their website.