HumanCo – A Health Obsessed Holding Company – Acquires Majority Share Of Coconut Bliss

Food & Drink

HumanCo, a holding company led by former hedge fund manager turned health & sustainability advocate Jason Karp, recently announced a majority interest in Coconut Bliss. The organic, plant-based ice cream brand is based in Oregon and was founded in 2005 where it developed a loyal following. Plant-based milk is a powerhouse category, now purchased by 41% of US households and opening the door to the $1.4 billion plant-based dairy category. Coconut Bliss “is in the eight figures of revenue,” according to Karp.  While traditional dairy ice cream makes up more than half of the overall market, year over year dairy ice cream revenue fell by 0.7% in 2018 while non-dairy surged by 14%, according to Mintel


In the first of many acquisitions, HumanCo will work with Coconut Bliss to grow the Oregon-based frozen dessert producer into a globally recognized brand. Karp’s mission is an intensely personal one. He shares, “In my early 20s, I was very sick with many different autoimmune diseases. The scary one was that I was told I would go blind. I went down many rabbit holes to try and discover why I was ill as a 23 year old. I didn’t know the cause, but I knew that when I massively cleaned up my diet, removed caffeine and alcohol, started exercising and taught myself to sleep again, all of my autoimmune diseases disappeared.”

Inspired by Karp’s life-changing health experiences, HumanCo invests in and builds companies that make the cleanest and best tasting version of a consumer product – which is why they joined forces with Coconut Bliss. Karp says, “We are not a VC. We are not a fund. We are a single company that is backing, building, and creating brands.”  Karp co-created the company Hu, which makes grain-free crackers and vegan chocolate, founded Hu Kitchen in New York, and has also invested in Monty’s vegan cream cheese brand under the HumanCo umbrella.

 HumanCo, which will invest in and grow health-focused CPG businesses, has raised $15M in a Series A round led by Vista Equity Partners co-founder Brian Sheth. It also brought in several notable angel investors, including Indra Nooyi (former chairwoman and CEO of PepsiCo), Trevor Edwards (former Nike Brand president) and Karlie Kloss, supermodel and philanthropist.

Karp’s intention is to create a holding company of many profitable brands that can be held indefinitely. He states, “This is not a buy, build and sell approach. This is a buy and build approach.”

Over the last five months, Karp and his team have evaluated more than 50 pitches. They start with a deep dive into the health and sustainability components of the brand. Karp vets the ingredient label and nutrition facts panel, determining how the product is really made. He counts ‘ingredients over calories,’ understands the science behind any on-pack claims, and immediately passes on products with artificial ingredients, chemicals, refined sugars, hormones, or the inhumane treatment of animals. 

 “We start with health and sustainability, before we do the financials. We have passed on many financially compelling deals because we didn’t like how it was made or the ingredient list,” says Karp.

 Karp is looking to incubate not just companies and ideas, but entrepreneurs. He aims to support companies where he can invest in and grow the founder and management team, a priority that deeply resonated with Coconut Bliss. 

“I am thrilled to join forces with HumanCo and amplify the importance of organic and intentionally sourced foods,” said Kim Gibson Clark, CEO of Coconut Bliss. “Coconut Bliss has always been dedicated to real ingredients, minimal processing, organic farming practices, fair trade, and socially just labor practices with all of our products and suppliers. HumanCo strengthens these commitments by providing shared resources to help our company operate on a larger scale.”

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