DENVER and VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Aug. 24, 2021 — Koios Beverage Corp. (CSE: KBEV; OTC: KBEVF) (the “Company” or “Koios”) is pleased to announce that pursuant to a one-year renewable agreement finalized on August 12, 2021, Koios has entered into a partnership with Blackbeard Beverage Company (“Blackbeard’), who is a distributor for Carolina Canners Inc. (“Carolina Canners”), an independent bottler for Pepsi beverages on the east coast of the United States. Carolina Canners and Blackbeard will each respectively provide full-service manufacturing and distribution of all four Fit Soda™ flavours east of the Mississippi River. Blackbeard has already confirmed an order of 216 pallets of Fit Soda™ (each containing 104 cases and 2,496 cans) valued at USD $575,000, the largest single wholesale order of canned beverages in the Company’s history.
Blackbeard has already started to procure raw materials for the production, canning, and packaging of Fit Soda™ at Carolina Canners, to fill an order for 54 pallets of each flavour, which Carolina Canners is to manufacture. Subsequently, Blackbeard is to distribute this order to its accounts in the grocery category to include more than 1,000 supermarket locations of Food Lion located in the mid-Atlantic and southeastern regions of the United States. Following the Company’s February 18, 2021 press release in which it announced its own in-house canning facility located in the Denver, Colorado area, Koios has started to explore opportunities to further expand its manufacturing pipeline as its beverage products such as Fit Soda™ continue to build sustained popularity among consumers in the United States. More than 700,000 units of Fit Soda™ were sold in 2020 after being launched in July of the prior year.
In the 1960s, Carolina Canners was formed through the amalgamation of several bottlers, including two bottlers for Pepsi, who created a joint venture in 1968 to capitalize on growing demand for packaged beverages including canned sodas. After choosing Cheraw, South Carolina as its principal location in which to operate, Carolina Canners began manufacturing beverages for clients to include Pepsi. In 1972 Carolina Canners added a bottle line for non-returnable bottles, and in 2013 made a USD $26 million investment into injection moulding and blow moulding machinery to produce its own plastic bottles. Carolina Canners has also established several distribution relationships with wholesalers and grocers in several states to provide greater value to the beverage brands it services.
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Blackbeard, who is a beverage distributor for Pepsi Bottler Carolina Canners, has placed a USD $575,000 purchase order for all four varieties of Fit Soda™ to distribute to accounts on the east coast of the United States to include more than 1,000 Food Lion supermarkets
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With two canning lines, Carolina Canners’ facility in Cheraw has the capacity to produce more than 1.15 million beverage cans in an eight-hour shift, and currently produces more than 9.1 million cases of beverage cans per year in addition to over 14.65 million cases of bottled products per year. This capacity could prove instrumental in satisfying continued demand for Fit Soda™ with sustained interest in eastern regions of the United States.
Koios Chief Executive Officer Chris Miller commented, “This business relationship with Blackbeard and Carolina Canners is a major development for us because Fit Soda™ can now be manufactured and distributed from the same production facility as some of the nation’s largest beverage brands. Furthermore, to have secured the largest purchase order in the Company’s history through Blackbeard before production has even started is a magnificent validation of the Fit Soda™ product as a relevant beverage to a large segment of the U.S. population. Placing Fit Soda™ in Food Lion supermarkets will also boost our store count by about 25%, increasing our footprint to more than 5,000 points of sale across the country. We look forward to working with Blackbeard and Carolina Canners, as established players in the Pepsi ecosystem. We believe they can be key partners in helping build Koios’ market share as we continue our launch of Fit Soda™.”
Sterling Whitley, CSO of Blackbeard commented, “We are enthusiastic about working with Koios because their Fit Soda™ functional beverage product offers a new dimension of value to consumers in the carbonated beverages category. The general public is far more conscious nowadays about what their beverages contain both in terms of specific attributes they want (e.g., electrolytes) as well as ingredients they want to cut down on or avoid (e.g., sugar). In just its second year, Fit Soda™ has performed exceptionally well as a new beverage product, and we take pride in being Koios’ newest partner to both distribute and facilitate manufacturing of their entire line of Fit Soda™ functional beverages. Starting later in 2021 we intend to start shipping Fit Soda™ made in Carolina Canners’ production facility to several of our accounts throughout various markets on the east coast, which we anticipate could help to scale Fit Soda™’s market presence and build momentum as Koios and its distribution partners continue to roll Fit Soda™ out across the United States.”
The Company also announces that Mr. Theo van der Linde has resigned as the Company’s Chief Financial Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Chris Miller will continue on as the Company’s interim Chief Financial Officer while a suitable replacement is being sought. Koios would like to thank Mr. van der Linde for his time and contributions made to the Company.
On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Company,
KOIOS BEVERAGE CORP.
Chris Miller, CEO, and Director
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