LOS ANGELES — Beverage startup De La Calle has raised $7 million in funding to expand its product line and national retail footprint.
Founded in 2020, De La Calle produces tepache, a fermented pineapple drink based on a centuries-old Mexican street treat. Founders Rafael Martin Del Campo and Alex Matthews formulated the beverages using family recipes. Tepache is low in sugar and contains probiotics, according to the company.
Flavors include orange turmeric, tamarind citrus, pineapple spice ginger manzana and picante mango chili. The brand is introducing additional flavors, including watermelon jalapeño, chamoy, cactus prickly pear and grapefruit lime. Products are sold in more than 2,000 supermarkets and specialty grocery stores across the country. The brand is set to launch into five regions of Whole Foods Market stores, including Southern California, Northern California, Rocky Mountain, Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.
“Our new flavors like watermelon jalapeño and chamoy will help us reach even more tepache lovers as we enter 2022,” Mr. Martin del Campo said. “Celebrating the rich Latin heritage of tepache is No. 1 for us so we’re glad to have a great partner to help us in this mission as we continue to grow as a brand through exciting product innovation and retail expansion.”
The funding round was led by KarpReilly, a private investment firm, with participation by HERE Studio, a branding agency founded by Mr. Matthews; and DrinkPAK, a contract manufacturer of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.“We couldn’t be happier to kick off 2022 with this support from KarpReilly to expand De La Calle’s offerings and retail footprint,” Mr. Matthews said. “Our first year in business was incredibly rewarding as we established a strong retail presence and a passionate customer base that went wild for our flavors. With KarpReilly by our side, we are in a strong position to continue this promising growth.”