I LOVE starting a new week with a Behind the Biz interview. I hope that you all find them as interesting and inspiring as I do. If you’re new around here, Behind the Biz is my weekly interview series where I chat to the founders of awesome brands. This week we’re back within the food and drink industry.
In today’s post I’m talking to Andrew Gibb, the founder of Coldpress.
Please tell us about your business.
Coldpress (2010) is the UK’s ‘leading light’ when it comes to pioneering HPP (Cold Pressure) juices in the UK. As with any great idea there’s always a gaggle of young pretenders who are eager to join the party a little later down the line AND YET we’re very relaxed about competition because we know it takes many whispering voices to start a revolution.
A public health report (2014) entitled ‘sugar reduction’ was the very moment when the wider soft drinks sector slid into freefall, (of which juices is the single largest contributor) although in truth the danger signs had been lurking for considerably longer.
Tropicana and Innocent (Pepsi & Coke) had carved up the chiller fixture between them and yet beneath their beautifully buffed identities lurked ‘old school’ pasteurised juices utilizing heavy-handed technology born in the 1950’s
In stark contrast HPP avoids imposing heavy handed heat treatments, opting instead for short bursts of ‘light touch’ hydrostatic pressure that gently neutralises ‘unfriendly’ bacteria without compromising the nutritional integrity or delicate flavour notes of our meticulously picked ingredients. Such an approach means HPP juices are rammed full of essential nutrients, minerals and a kaleidoscope of deliciously discreet flavour nuances.
We began life as a proud provider of single varietal apple & orange juices before quickly expanding into smoothies, almond milks, veggie juices, low calorie carbonated juices and sumptuous juice infused coconut waters. Today HPP remains the undoubted star within a slowly recovering juice fixture.
Where did the inspiration for Coldpress come from?
I’d actually been part of a forward-thinking Preshafood team, an ahead-of-its time Australian operation that spent two years and a significant sum of money working with Food Science Australia to create the world’s first HPP juices.
How did you decide upon the name of your business?
That was easy. HPP is often referred to as ‘cold pressure.’ The joy of being 1st to market means we got first dibs when it came to naming rights.
What did you do before starting Coldpress?
A seasoned marketer with a diverse blue chip back catalogue.
Did you always plan to set up your own business?
Definitely! I’ve always prided myself on my tenacity and inquisitive mind
What has been the biggest challenge in running your business so far?
Taking on not one but two corporate monoliths during the early days. Unlike some of our peers we were determined to be true juice evangelists and champion affordable ‘everyday’ price points from Day.1. This is in stark contrast to a number of our rivals who initially made their name within the discerning deli scene of Chelsea & Knightsbridge where more lucrative margins were available.
What has been the highlight of your business journey to date?
Our Waitrose listing – from Day.1 they’ve fully appreciated what we’ve been trying to achieve giving us plenty of opportunities to express ourselves. We now ably supported by a number of top drawer retailers but we’ll never forget Waitrose giving us our 1st break.
What role does social media play for your business and do you have a favourite social platform?
We’re still feeling our way but as a ‘millennial’ offering, social media is integral to our wider offer. Instagram has to be one of our favourites.
What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Persevere whatever obstacles are put in your way – and there will be a few!
Where do you hope to take your business in the year ahead?
Exports are already blossoming Carrefour (France) but there’s plenty more scope for Pan European expansion. The health food sector also intrigues us which is why Boots was such a big win for us earlier in this year (as is healthier vending). The deli, the café scene, hospitality and the wider independent sector are also prominent on our radar.
I want to say a huge thank you to Andrew for taking the time to be involved with Behind the Biz. I loved finding out about his business journey and learning a little more about High Pressure Processing. I’m a big fan of Coldpress juices and love that I can easily grab one in my local Boots for an affordable price. I think Andrew shares very wise words for aspiring entrepreneurs. It’s important to find your passion and persevere, don’t give up easily and be prepared for a few hiccups along the way. I look forward to seeing Coldpress grow in the year ahead.
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