BOBO'S CEO DISCUSSES THE IMPORTANCE OF CASH FLOW
At NOSH Live, entrepreneurs hailing from a variety of companies and backgrounds gathered to network and learn from successful industry leaders. As part of the event’s slate of speakers, T.J. McIntyre, currently CEO of Bobo’s Oat Bars, shared lessons from a career spent working with high growth companies and managing cash flow in and out of their businesses.
The reason to pay attention to cash flow, he told the crowd, is “that when cash goes away from you it really starts to hurt in ways that maybe you didn’t anticipate.”
McIntyre highlighted three key lessons from his decades of experience. First, reflecting on his time at Frontier Natural Products Co-Op, he explained why brands must always have realistic forecasts for sales, revenue and growth. Second, pulling from his time at Boulder Brands which acquired Glutino and Udi’s gluten-free brands, he explained the importance of recognizing when a brand has hit its peak (and realistically may want to consider exiting) — or at least when it has hit its current limits. And three, inspired by Bobo’s most recent product launches, when to prioritize and when to hold back on innovation.
McIntyre also explored key tenants to keep a healthy bank balance, such as prioritizing revenue and “continuously achieving cost excellence.”
INDUSTRY ALL-STARS HAVE SPOKEN AT NOSH LIVE
Divisional Merchandise Manager, Chilled Packaged Goods, Walmart
Sarah has spent the last 10 years in the food business at Walmart. During this time she has held roles in private brands, sustainability as well as various buying roles in merchandising. She’s currently leading the refrigerated buying teams to cultivate a new shopping experience. She is passionate about growing American entrepreneurs and creating new models for growth.
Former co-CEO, Whole Foods Market; Principal, Stonewall Robb Advisors
An investor, mentor and advisor to the next generation of American food companies, former co- CEO of Whole Foods Market Walter Robb has a long and varied entrepreneurial history, ranging from natural food retailer to farmer to consultant. Robb joined Whole Foods Market in 1991 and in 2010 was named co-CEO along with John Mackey, at which time he joined the Whole Foods Market Board of Directors. In 2017, Robb transitioned his leadership focus to his role as a passionate advocate for greater food access in underserved communities, serving as Chairman of the Board for Whole Kids Foundation and Whole Cities Foundation. Robb also serves on the Board of Directors for Union Square Hospitality Group, The Container Store, FoodMaven, HeatGenie and Apeel Sciences.
President & CEO, The Tofurky Company
Jaime Athos is a visionary and passionate leader in the plant-based foods industry. With more than 14 years of experience building and supporting its growth, Athos is energized by the ever-increasing opportunity and adoption of plant-based foods worldwide. Prior to his current role as President and CEO at The Tofurky Company, Athos held a variety of other positions within the brand that is also his family’s business, from a college summer job making tempeh to roles in quality assurance, research and development, and operations. As a category leader Tofurky serves a purpose beyond the plate, acting as an engine for global change. Athos exemplifies and manifests this change by way of plant-based political activism, eco-friendly manufacturing, and pursuit of food innovation that helps people to make better choices for farm animals, the environment and health. Athos holds a Doctoral degree in neurobiology and behavior from the University of Washington and a Bachelor of Science degree in fish biology from the same. He is a founding member of the Plant Based Foods Association, where he currently serves as president of the Board. The association aims to ensure a fair and competitive market place for all businesses selling plant-based foods, promoting policies and practices that improve opportunities for the industry, and educating consumers.
Founder & CEO, CAULIPOWER and Vegolutionary Foods
Gail Becker is the Founder and CEO of CAULIPOWER and Vegolutionary Foods. Already well known in professional circles, Gail’s career reached the highest levels of media, politics and business - including executive roles at Warner Bros., The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and Edelman. But as a mom of two boys with celiac disease, Gail was not happy with the gluten-free options available to her family. Who wants pizza that’s full of sugar and chemicals, or doesn’t taste anything like pizza, or takes 90 minutes to make? Seeing that the food industry offered no nutritious solutions for busy, foodie families to enjoy together, Gail took matters into her own hands and launched CAULIPOWER in early 2017. CAULIPOWER disrupted one of grocery’s most stagnant categories and is now the #1 gluten-free pizza and #1 fastest growing pizza brand in the U.S., with availability in over 22,000 stores. Earlier this year, CAULIPOWER was honored with Walmart’s “Supplier of the Year, Innovation” award. In 2018, Gail launched a new mother brand, Vegolutionary Foods, as a platform for innovative, approachable and convenient meal-hacking products, including the world’s first superfood toast, Sweet PotaTOASTS. Gail is a passionate advocate for new entrepreneurs, women in business and making vegetable nutrition accessible and delicious to all - especially kids.
Chairman, Beyond Meat; TeaEO, Honest Tea
Seth Goldman co-founded Honest® Tea in 1998 with Professor Barry Nalebuff of the Yale School of Management. In March 2011, Honest Tea was acquired by The Coca-Cola Company, helping to further the reach and impact of Honest Tea’s mission by becoming the first organic and Fair Trade brand in the world's largest beverage distribution system. Today, Honest Tea is the nation’s top selling ready-to-drink organic bottled tea and Honest Kids® is the nation’s top-selling organic kids’ juice drink. The brands are carried in more than 130,000 outlets in the United States, including all Wendy’s, Chik-fil-A, and SUBWAY restaurants. In 2016 Honest Tea’s distribution expanded to Europe. In 2016, Seth transitioned to a new role at Honest Tea as TeaEO Emeritus and Innovation Catalyst for Coca-Cola’s Venturing & Emerging Brands business unit. This transition allows him to take on an additional role as Executive Chairman of Beyond Meat, a privately held California-based enterprise on the cutting edge of plant-based protein research and development. In 2015 Seth was named the #1 Disruptor by Beverage World, and Beverage Executive of the Year by Beverage Industry magazine; he was also inducted into the Washington DC Business Hall of Fame. Seth has also been recognized by the United States Healthful Food Council with a REAL Food Innovator Award for helping change the food landscape by providing options that are healthier for both the body and the planet. Seth serves on the advisory boards of Ripple Foods, the Yale School of Management, the American Beverage Association, and Bethesda Green (a local sustainability non-profit he co-founded). He graduated from Harvard College (1987) and the Yale School of Management (1995), and is a Henry Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute. Seth and Barry are the authors, along with graphic artist Soongyun Choi, of The New York Times bestseller Mission in a Bottle. The book, told in comic book form, captures their efforts to create a mission-driven business in a profit-driven world. Seth lives with his wife and three sons near Honest Tea’s Bethesda, MD headquarters in an eco-friendly house.
Founder, Sonoma Brands
Jon founded Sonoma Brands in January 2016 to invest in high-growth, emerging consumer brands and selectively incubate new concepts. Through Sonoma Brands, Jon intends to build a leading growth equity fund exclusively focused on the CPG space. As a successful entrepreneur with experience in building multiple brands, Jon understands a founder’s need to look beyond capital and select a partner with value-add capabilities around sales, marketing, supply chain operations, and R&D. Jon oversees current and prospective portfolio investments and leads the firm’s investment and operation teams. Jon began his career steering the sales & marketing for Viansa, his family’s winery, and eventually leading the business as President, becoming one of the most successful destination wineries in the Napa and Sonoma valleys. After helping drive the M&A process leading up to Viansa’s sale, Jon served as Managing Director of wine.com, assisting in the turnaround toward its first profitable quarter. As an avid runner training for the New York City Marathon in 2009, Jon realized the opportunity to turn jerky, a commonly used training food, into something truly special. Influenced by his wine background, Jon founded KRAVE Pure Foods (“KRAVE”) to create a differentiated jerky brand with culinary-inspired flavor profiles and all-natural ingredients. As the Founder and CEO of KRAVE, Jon led one of the most disruptive, fastest growing CPG brands in the industry, culminating in the company’s acquisition by The Hershey Company in 2015.
Founder, Green Park Brands & HIPPEAS
CEO & Founder, Biena Snacks
Poorvi Patodia launched Biena Snacks in 2012, when the plant-based protein snack trend was still in its infancy. Inspired by a favorite childhood snack, she started experimenting with roasted chickpeas in her own kitchen, and ultimately came up with a unique roasting process that resulted in a light and crispy texture, that maintained the protein, fiber and nutrients of a whole chickpea. Today, Biena Snacks has reached national distribution with availability in over 14,000 retail locations, secured dozens of "best snack" awards and recently introduced a first-of-its-kind line of chocolate-covered roasted chickpeas, which includes a Girl Scout Cookie™-Inspired Thin Mints™ flavor that launches in June. Poorvi has been recognized as an emerging business leader, being featured as a "Rising Star" CEO among the Inc. 5000 fastest growing companies in 2017, and one of Food Navigator USA’s “Entrepreneurs to Watch. Poorvi has her MBA from Duke University Fuqua School of Business, and lives in Boston with her husband and two daughters. She frequently mentors other budding food entrepreneurs in the Boston area, offering guidance to help grow and produce more successful local businesses.
NEXT CONFERENCE: NOSH LIVE WINTER 2019 IN SANTA MONICA
The next NOSH Live event takes place at the Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel on December 4th and 5th. More than 300 natural food industry founder and executives come together to move their businesses forward and discover what's next for the industry. Plan ahead and secure your seat at the two-day conference for the natural food industry. Early registration savings of $200 per ticket ends October 25th.