Coca-Cola has sold Zico coconut water to an investment fund co-founded by the man who sold it to Coca-Cola in the first place.
PowerPlant Ventures, a venture capital firm co-founded by Mark Rampolla, has bought Zico for an undisclosed sum. Rampolla created Zico in 2004, after discovering coconut water during a stint with the Peace Corps, according to the Wall Street Journal. He sold a minority stake in the brand to Coca-Cola in 2009, and the rest in 2013.
But during the pandemic, Coca-Cola was among the major processors that trimmed marginal SKUs to concentrate on the more mainstream products that were suddenly in demand. Zico, a distant second in coconut water behind Vita Coco, got the ax.
PowerPlant Ventures has invested in a variety of food companies, including Beyond Meat and Eat JUST Inc., which produce plant-analogue meat and eggs, respectively.