Name: Bōku Superfoods
Legal Name: Bōku International Inc.
Location: Ojai, CA
Founded: September 2007
Founder(s): Lynn Rolle, Reno Rolle
Social Media Following: 15103 Likes on Facebook, 2776 Followers on Twitter, 4162 Followers on Instagram
Reviews: 4.5 stars on Yelp, 31 reviews
INDUSTRY – Organic Food/Nutritional Supplements
Size: $49.4B (2017); 30% (~$13B) is direct-to-consumer (Source: Organic Trade Assoc. Survey)
Projections: $70.4B by 2025
Bōku (pronounced bōh-koo) Superfoods is a family-owned health and well-being company which sells organic nutritional supplements which it claims have ‘extraordinary potency’ and calls ‘super foods’. The company specializes in fruits, vegetables, sprouts, mushrooms, and other organic materials with nutritional potency, such as Quinoa, Goji Berry, and Matcha among others. The company sells powdered and liquefied versions of these natural ingredients for improved nutrition, immunity, hygiene, and energy.
All of Bōku’s products, according to the company, are 100% USDA certified organic, vegan, kosher, and gluten-free. Ingredients are sourced from across the world and blended at Bōku’s Ojai facility in California. The products are formulated by their Chief Medical Advisor, Dr. BJ Adrezin, who is a prominent practicing naturopathic doctor based in Los Angeles, CA. According to the website, quality is maintained by independent 3rd party testing on all products. Ingredients are harvested fresh, dried at a low temperature, and powdered. Customers can add water to create fresh drinks, or blend the powders together into other wet food items for taste. The products are meant to be mixed together to cater to customized nutritional requirements.
Bōku products are priced at a premium and are only available on the company’s website and a few other digital e-tailers. Their eponymous Superfood is available at a starting price of $55.99 for a month’s supply (9.4 Oz). Depending upon the ingredients and the function, prices of their products vary, with the meal supplements costing between $35-45 for a month’s supply. Soaps and oral hygiene products fall between $8 and $20, while snacks, beverages, etc. cost between $20-40.
Origin and Founding Team
Lynn and Reno Rolle of Ojai, CA, were looking for an alternative to prescription drugs for their son, who had been diagnosed with an ‘attention disorder’ in 1995. A naturopathic doctor recommended that they try organic ‘superfoods’, and they ordered a product which had an unappetizing taste. To encourage Reno Jr., Lynn and Reno Sr. mixed the powder with juice to mask the flavor and also consumed it with him. A marked improvement in Reno Jr.’s symptoms as well as in their own health spurred them onto doing more research on superfoods.
Reno Rollé is a 2014 & 2016 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year nominee and current Chairman of Boku International. Coming from a background in infomercial marketing, Reno was able to help Bōku grow on networks such as Evine. He also authored books on organic superfoods as remedies which have sold millions of copies and his first book was a #1 NYT bestseller. Lynn Rollé is the CEO of Boku International and the website refers to her as the ‘boss’.
Performance and Trends
Today, the company has spent 10+ years building a recognized brand in the superfoods space and has served 70,000+ healthy customers. It’s mean average revenue per customer since 2008 is $254+.
In 2015, the company took on what Reno called a ‘very small round’ of funding, but details are unknown. Additionally, the founders indicated dissatisfaction with external backers in that they didn’t ‘understand’ the brand.
Today, the company is currently towards the end of an equity crowdfunding campaign on StartEngine.com. Initially begun with a goal of $10K which was raised in less than 40 days, the company extended the goal to $1.07M. They have extended the deadline, and now the campaign has raised $252,193.00 from 215 investors at the cost of $.50/share of common stock. The company is betting that they could find enough people willing to bet that the Boku Superfoods would be worth more than $6.3M in the near future.
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