FORTO Strong Coffee Founder and CEO, Neel Premkumar, Shares His Success Story as an Entrepreneur and Brand Expert

FORTO Strong Coffee

Neel Premkumar, Founder and CEO of FORTO Strong Coffee, a portable 2oz. bottle of coffee made with organic and Fair-trade 100% Arabica coffee beans containing the natural energy of two regular cups of coffee joins Enterprise Radio.

Listen to interview with host Eric Dye & guest Neel Premkumar discuss the following:

  • What separates FORTO from other energy drinks and caffeine products? Did you find any difficulty trying to separate FORTO from other energy drinks/caffeine products already in the market?
  • How did you first get involved in beverage space? What first led you to discover branding and creating new beverages in the market —was this a gift of yours?
  • Throughout the process, what have you found to be the most challenging as an entrepreneur entering a competitive market?
  • What lessons learned from starting STUR drinks have you applied to creating FORTO?
  • Seeing as you have made a name for yourself as a brand expert in the consumer world, with brands such as Nestle, as well as an acclaimed entrepreneur, what advice would you give to one who is developing their own brand? Have you found there is a formula or pattern to becoming successful?

Founder and CEO Neel Premkumar’s success as an entrepreneur began while attending business school where he started a marketing tech company with venture capital backing, and secured large clients like Unilever, Samsung and General Mills. However, when the market turned sour in 2008 and additional capital was not forthcoming, Neel pivoted the business to being a profitable marketing agency.  From there, Neel was approached by a Nestle executive to lead the effort in launching a sports drink competitor to Gatorade, and soon afterwards, was promoted to running Brand Marketing for PowerBar.

In 2012, Neel created his first brand – Stur – an All-Natural liquid drink mix.  Stur was initially created for Neel’s wife, so she could drink more water naturally while pregnant with their twin girls. With brand management experience at big packaged goods companies, Neel had the network and knowledge to successfully launch his brand and secure national retail distribution.

In 2015, Neel and his wife were in need of wholesome energy on-the-go to keep up with their growing twins, but they weren’t comfortable with the artificial energy shots on the market. Believing an energy shot could be made purely from coffee and deliver the same energy as leading energy shot brands, they began research and development of what would become FORTO Strong Coffee shot – an Organic packaged double shot of coffee to-go, made with 100% Arabica beans, hand-selected from Fair-Trade certified family farms.

FORTO Strong Coffee


Social Media Links:
Twitter: @fortocoffee

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