NOA Potions has won the top prize in the World Beverage Innovation Awards, with the anti-stress beverage NOA Relaxation.
The Swedish startup thereby triumphs over multinational companies such as Del Monte and Pernod Ricard by winning in the best premium drink category.
Noa Fridmark, founder of NOA Potions, says, “It’s like Sweden winning the World Cup. We have defeated the giant Pernod Ricard, a multinational with more than eighteen thousand employees. We are less than ten people working in our company and the judging panel thinks we are better. That’s big.”
The sales of relaxation drinks have boomed in the US and business media such as Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal has highlighted the new market as a potential billion-dollar industry. Noa Fridmark and his team have now brought the novelty to Sweden. NOA Relaxation has been out in stores for less than a month but has already received considerable attention both nationally and internationally.
Noa Fridmark says, “There is an empty spot on the market, that’s why we have been welcomed with open arms. The relaxation drink has emerged as a counter-reaction to energy drinks. The need for this type of drink is out there – people are stressed. Our beverage makes your head sharp and body calm. It’s a healthier way to focus. I see this prize as a big recognition.”
Noa Fridmark has gone from initial idea to final product in less than a year. Several big names within the industry have spotted the young entrepreneur and his new beverage. Former GM of Red Bull Nordic, Robert Grenmark, has invested in the Swedish startup. Another investor is Göran Lundqvist, former CEO of Absolut Vodka.
World Beverage Innovation Awards is the world’s largest beverage contest. Last year, more than 400 brands participated from over 40 different countries. This year’s contestants included, among others, Coca-Cola, Nestlé, Arla Foods, Carlsberg and Evian. The awards were presented during a ceremony at the largest beverage exhibition, BrauBevaile, in Nuremberg, Germany.