NEWS: Upscale Tea Company Seeks $100,000 To Expand Into Japan and Canada

An innovative tea company has launched an equity crowdfunding campaign to raise $100,000.

Charles & Company, with HQ in Long Beach, originally launched about five years ago. It currently offers various types of organic, upscale tea through its website.

Founder Lawrence Charles has self-funded the startup with about $75,000.

Its current fundraising campaign is open to all investors, using the mechanism of Title III equity crowdfunding.

For the raise, the company is valued at about $1.2 million.

Charles & Company would use the funds for the following: –

  • build out its AI-powered software platform and app and start selling subscriptions
  • work on its current pipeline.
  • expansion into Canada and Japan.

The company is working on enhancing its packaging to begin distribution soon in Japan. And, in the fall, Charles plans to meet with investors from Toronto to map out the Canadian distribution.

Lawrence has also launched a new brand, known as Charles Teably, an electrolyte-based, vitamin- and mineral-rich, tea-based drink for athletes, who require high mental acuity to perform at elite levels.

This brand expects to wrap up formulation in September and begin marketing and sampling with athlete influencers next month. It plans to begin selling in stores in early 2020.

And, the company has a new a co-founder, Yumei Lin, who has a Ph.D. in nutrition. She developed products for over 10 years at Nutrilite and oversaw R&D of billion-dollar product lines. She has organized and managed clinical trials internationally in countries including the U.S., Canada and Rusia. She has also been on the faculty at UC Davis.

For the tea, Charles & Company averages about $70 per sale, with margins upward of 90%, Lawrence said.

About The Author

Deirdre Newman is a long-time journalist, who's covered OC startups for a few years.

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