SOAK Shakes & Co. is a start-up that's aiming to 'do well, by doing good.' Co-founders Roxy Vickerman and Emma Knock create delicious dairy-free milkshakes and donate a percentage of each sale to support elephant and rhino conservation in Africa.
We choose one Virgin StartUp company to be featured on Virginstartup.org each week. We ask our startups of the week to deliver the ultimate elevator pitch. What would they say if they had one minute in a lift with Sir Richard Branson?
Ground to floor 1 – Explain what your business does
SOAK Shakes & Co. is a London-based social enterprise founded by Roxy Vickerman and Emma Knock. We produce an artisan range of fresh dairy-free milkshakes, handmade with raw coconut and nut milks and 100% plant-based ingredients. Our mission is to produce delicious handcrafted products with purpose. Low impact to the Earth and tremendously good for you.
Floor 1 to 2 - Where are you based?
North London, but we can be often found around Soho/Fitzrovia area working with a coffee in hand!
Floor 2 to 3 – What’s the business model?
Our aim is to get stocked in premium independent outlets in London (then nationwide), expand into the catering industry, and build up our portfolio of fresh, 100% plant-based products. The UK is the focus the next couple years, then GLOBAL. We are for profit, and for purpose. A percentage of every shake sold supports elephant and rhino conservation in Africa. We work with Lewa Wildlife Conservancy to achieve this.
Floor 3 to 4 – Who are your competitors?
We don’t have any direct competitors to our fresh coconut and cashew milkshakes, which are all made with real fruit. There are a ton of cold-press juices and (mostly) UHT flavoured nut milk drinks, which is great for expanding the dairy-free category. The likes of The Pressery and Plenish have really helped open up buyer perception.
Floor 4 to 5 – What’s your USP?
Fresh, raw and 100% plant-based — not UHT (ultra-heat treated). Making fresh coconut milk is a messy business, but gives us the edge over easier-to-make alternative milks. Our social enterprise mission (profit + purpose) also helps our customers make a more impactful purchase.
Floor 5 to 6 – Where did the idea come from?
Thailand! We were taught how to make fresh coconut milk by Mina, an inspiring female entrepreneur who runs cooking classes on Koh Yao Noi island. When we returned to London, we couldn’t find fresh coconut milkshakes anywhere so we began cracking on with the idea (literally!)
Floor 6 to 7 – How much funding did you receive from Virgin StartUp?
Floor 7 to 8 – How are you going to use it to grow your business?
Branding, website development, marketing, consultancy, cold-press machines, product packaging and the machinery we’ll need as we scale.
Floor 8 to 9 – Who’s your Virgin StartUp Mentor? (Name and business)
Steven Sroba, Goldman Sachs.
Floor 9 to 10 – What’s your workspace like?
More often than not, the likes of TAP or Kaffeine, but here’s our humble office at home… It’s dog friendly, fully catered and has an open vacation policy.
Floor 10 to 11 – where will your business be in 12 months time?
London-based, stocked in at least 15 independent delis and also in Wholefoods, Fortnum & Mason and Selfridges. We’ve secured a factory and extended our product range to include five or more flavours. Our Shake for Life purpose made tangible impact with Lewa, driving positive change for conservation of elephant and rhino in Kenya. We’re also making plans to go nationwide and global, and we’re growing the team and the dairy-free category!
For more information about SOAK Shakes & Co. visit: http://www.soakshakes.co.uk/