DALLAS — Prebiotic soda brand Poppi raised $13.5 million in a celebrity investment round.
Musical artists Halsey, Ellie Goulding, Nicole Scherzinger, The Chainsmokers, 24kGoldn and Kygo participated in the round, along with actress Olivia Munn, professional athletes Russell Westbrook and Kevin Love and social media personalities Chantel Jeffries, Bryce Hall, Noah Beck, Josh Richards, Griffin Johnson and Blake Gray. Consumer goods investment firm CAVU Ventures also committed to the investment pool.
Poppi’s latest investors join the brand on its mission to reinvent the beverage category with clean, functional sodas. Each can of Poppi soda contains approximately one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, along with sparkling water, fruit and plant-based sweeteners. The beverages contain prebiotics that aid in digestion, immunity and skin health.
At $2.49 per can, Poppi comes in a range of flavors, including watermelon, strawberry lemon, raspberry rose, orange, ginger lime, grapefruit and more. The sodas are sold in more than 7,500 retail doors, including Target, Safeway, Kroger, Publix and Whole Foods as well as online at Amazon.com.
Poppi will use funds from the $13.5 million round to expand distribution, scale its internal team and invest in marketing opportunities.
“We’re really excited to have these new celebrity partners as an extension of our Poppi team — we have no doubt that they will play important roles in helping us scale awareness and grow our community as we continue to challenge big soda,” said Stephen Ellsworth, co-founder and chief executive officer of Poppi. “We firmly believe in the product we’ve created and consumers’ desire to choose prebiotic soda made with far less sugar, no artificial ingredients and gut health benefits over other soda options on the shelves today.”
Mr. Ellsworth co-founded the company with his wife, Allison, after learning about the gut healing powers of apple cider vinegar for her chronic health issues. The pair in 2018 appeared on “Shark Tank,” where they landed a major deal with CAVU Ventures co-founder Rohan Oza.
“Poppi is disrupting the multi-billion-dollar soda category by offering great tasting, low sugar, bubbles with benefits wrapped up in a culturally relevant brand,” Mr. Oza said. “As a digital first, celebrity and influencer favorite, Poppi has exploded into the marketplace over the last year and a half, growing exponentially both online and at retail. Poppi is the soda for the modern generation, and we’re thrilled to be leading this raise.”