and Jake Solomon
, you’ll first notice their off-the-chart energy and think, “I’ll have what they’re having.” Only in this case, that is actually possible. Doheny and Solomon are the founders of Bold Brew Coffee, a cold brew coffee brand marketed exclusively to action sports athletes and enthusiasts as a natural alternative to energy drinks.
Doheny and Solomon have been working with SDSU’s Zahn Innovation Platform (ZIP) Launchpad
to refine their business and test their product. They roast and brew their product locally, something they had to learn when first starting out.
Brewing is now done at a local commercial kitchen space that rents to startup food and beverage companies looking to test recipes and make large batches of product.
“We have both always loved coffee, but we had to learn to brew to start the company,” said Doheny. “We used as many resources and sought out as much mentorship about brewing as we could.”
Their tagline “Be Bold” speaks directly to skaters, surfers and snowboarders who love to “get their adrenaline pumping” but prefer to do without the chemicals and artificial flavors common in store-bought energy drinks.
Doheny and Solomon frequently head out to skate parks and popular surf spots for market research and say they’ve received great feedback from their potential customers.
The pair recently placed third in the Zahn Challenge, SDSU’s annual business pitch competition
for ZIP Launchpad teams.
“The Zahn Challenge experience was incredibly unique and special because we had the opportunity to pitch to successful entrepreneurs just like we would for capital investment,” said Doheny. “It primes us to think in terms of value proposition not only for our end-consumer but also for our high-level investor, which is crucial.”
Doheny said the cash prize offered to winners of the Zahn Challenge is going toward more brewing equipment, web development and business licenses.
Next up for Bold Brew: local distribution.
Bold Brew plans to sell their product on campus every Friday in East Commons beginning Feb. 3, thanks to an agreement with Aztec Shops.
You can learn more about the company at boldbrew.com