Coconut company, H2Coco, has been named Champion Specialised Small Business at the Australian Small Business Champion Awards.
David Freeman, CEO of H2Coco, told C&I Week the award recognised H2Coco’s dedication to coconut-based products, including coconut water, and that factors such as team dedication, quality control and assurance, marketing, brand development and awareness were among the components assessed in the awards process.
Mr Freeman told C&I he was most proud of having developed a company in an emerging category and seeing the coconut category grow and develop in Australia. First started in 2010, H2Coco has grown to employ 15 full time staff plus a number of part-time staff and contractors. The company exports to countries including New Zealand, South Africa, South Korea, Hong Kong, Germany, Italy, France, the Netherlands and Norway.
Mr Freeman recognised the contribution of the P&C channel to the brand’s success.
“Selling within the P&C channel has definitely helped the brand, with recent data showing it was the number one seller in the category in many P&C outlets. We have worked closely with the P&C channel, including companies like Caltex, Woolworths Petrol, BP and New Sunrise and I think that the grab and go nature of the product, plus the fact that it is a healthy alternative which aligns with consumer needs, offers the channel a growing opportunity.”
H2Coco partnered with Caltex Woolworths to launch the company’s Healthier Bites campaign which offers customers a range of healthier snack options priced at 3 for $7.
“Once P&C was all about pies and sodas, but these days everybody wants something that’s healthier and we are really driving that market by giving people on the road a healthier option,” Mr Freeman said.
Looking to the future, Mr Freeman said, “there will be a lot going on as we develop more coconut-based products, a lot of which will be coming out within the next 12 months.”
The Australian Small Business Champion Awards, which began in 1999, seeks to recognise the values associated with successful small businesses; including include service, commitment, leadership, endurance, courage, innovation, performance, persuasion and generosity. The program aims to recognise outstanding Australian small businesses and encourage high standards of excellence in small business practice.