For the past 10 years, I’ve celebrated July 4th in the same way:
At a lopsided picnic table in the countryside, surrounded by friends, family, and mountains of beer and barbecue.
But this year, I introduced a few new items to the festivities…
And not only were these items delicious—
But one day, they might make me some serious money.
To kick off the festivities, I popped open a $15 bottle of sparkling wine from Le Grand Courtage. It’s made in Los Angeles—and let me tell you, it rivals an $80 bottle of champagne.
After a few glasses of bubbly under the sun, we were getting thirsty. So I brought out a pitcher of Soma Water.
Soma is a water filtration system. It uses organic and plant-based filters—so not only is your water clean and tasty, but it isn’t exposed to any plastics or chemicals.
And for dessert, I brought out 6 pints of ice cream (including Dark Chocolate Salty Caramel and Peanutty Pretzel) from a tiny company called Phin & Phebes.
In the company’s own words, “Each pint is made with hormone-free dairy from small family farms just miles away from where we manufacture [it] ...”
You might be wondering why I’m telling you about the menu from my July 4th party. What could this possibly have to do with early-stage investing?
Well, the answer lies in something all these products have in common...
The Most Profitable Investment—Ever...
When Wayne and I write about early-stage investment opportunities, we generally explore disruptive technology start-ups:
Companies that are pioneering cures for disease, or building cyber security technologies, or creating virtual reality headsets.
But early-stage investing goes far beyond the realm of technology.
For example, food and beverage start-ups can make excellent private investments.
Naked Juice, for example, was once a tiny start-up. It believed there might be a market for all-natural juice in a bottle.
Fast-forward a few years… and Pepsi acquired it, for an estimated $450 million.
Here’s another example:
Several years ago, Chobani was a small start-up making Greek-style yogurt…
Now it’s valued at several billion dollars.
And the most profitable early-stage investment of all time?
Back in 1891, Asa Candler spent $2,300 to buy the formula for Coca-Cola from a Southern pharmacist.
32 years later, Candler sold Coke—for $25 million.
That’s a jaw-dropping 10,868x times his money.
And one day, not only might you be hearing similar stories about the three food and beverage companies from my July 4th party…
But investors like you could be counting your profits.
Equity Crowdfunding Platforms
You see, each company from my July 4th party raised money from investors like you.
They raised the money on equity crowdfunding platforms—basically, websites that connect start-ups that need capital with people who are looking to invest.
In exchange for capital, investors like you are given an ownership stake. So if one of these companies becomes the next Naked Juice or Coke, you could make a fortune.
In addition to the potential for financial gains, it’s surprisingly exciting to invest in products you can find on the shelves of your local grocery store.
And the look on my father-in-law’s face when he realized I was an owner of the champagne company… the water company… and the ice-cream company—
That was priceless!
Now It’s Your Turn
Now that Title III of the JOBS Act allows all investors to invest in private deals like these, perhaps you’d like to dip your toe in the water.
If so, here are a few food & beverage start-ups currently raising capital:
Hops & Grain — This is a gold-medal winning craft brewery based in Texas. Craft beer has exploded in popularity in recent years, and we predict continued growth and M&A in the space.
N1CE — This start-up makes alcoholic popsicles for adults. It’s currently raising $1 million, and investment minimums are just $100.
Cleveland Whiskey — If beer and Daiquiris aren’t your “cup of tea,” check out Cleveland Whiskey. This company leverages advanced technologies to create a premium whiskey in just 24 hours (as opposed to the six years it typically takes).
Please note: Crowdability has no relationship with any of the start-ups listed above, or any of the funding platforms they're listed on. Crowdability is an independent provider of education, information and research on start-ups and alternative investments.