US hard-kombucha brand JuneShine has secured investment from local private-equity specialist InvestBev.

Detailed terms on the deal were not disclosed but InvestBev, a private-equity fund that backs beverage-alcohol brands in North America, said it has agreed to put “seven figures” into the business.

The investment in JuneShine follows InvestBev’s backing for rum brand Ten to One and US RTD supplier Thomas Ashbourne Craft Spirits in recent months.

“Kombucha is at the perfect intersection of better-for-you, low-alc and ready-to-drink,” InvestBev managing partner Brian Rosen said. “JuneShine saw this shift before it became mainstream, and they’ve done a great job of expanding their lines while staying true to their brand and promise to consumers. All alternative beverages have a place in 2024 and beyond. The consumer wants variety and choice.”

San Diego-based JuneShine, set up in 2018, also markets spirit-based RTD cocktails. The company’s products are sold in 28 states in the US. Retail stockists include Kroger, Target and Whole Foods Market.

“California is our number market. We also sell very well in New York City, Denver, Hawaii, Portland, Seattle, Boston, Austin and many more cities,” JuneShine co-founder and CMO Forrest Dein said.

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Dein said the company, which does not disclose its annual sales nor profits, is launching into Walmart “with several hundred placements” in the coming weeks.

Asked how JuneShine planned to use InvestBev’s funds, he said the business would “continue to invest in growing our RTD spirit-based cocktails in our existing markets and supporting our new chain retailers like Walmart”.

Hard kombucha, Dein added, accounted for the greater proportion of JuneShine’s sales “but our spirits are growing quickly and becoming a larger percentage year on year”.

InvestBev is part of Growth Beverage, a US holding company that invests in and supports small- and medium-sized beverage-alcohol businesses.

Rosen’s oldest business – BevStrat – is a sales and marketing consultancy. Algoma Capital, Growth Beverage’s lending arm, provides distillers with support for working capital. A third element of Growth Beverage is Sprout Beverage, a start-up accelerator.

Interview: “Right now, I’m in the catbird seat” – InvestBev’s Brian Rosen weighs up next deal-making moves