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Stage 1 Fund Contributes to G.O.A.T. Fuel Raise

Dallas, May 22, 2023/ — G.O.A.T. Fuel, the amazing new energy drink, has completed raising a $5 million Seed round of funding led by Stage 1 Fund. Stage 1 Fund is dedicated to strengthening consumer-driven brands like G.O.A.T. Fuel and it is Stage 1 Fund’s honor to be a part of this raise.

G.O.A.T. Fuel is co-founded by the NFL Legend & Hall of Famer Jerry Rice along with his daughter, CEO Jaqui Rice Gold, and his son-in-law, CMO Trevion J. Gold. Jerry Rice is considered by most NFL fans to be the Greatest Of All Time wide receiver. His drive for excellence continues off the football field and into the business arena. It’s why they call it G.O.A.T. Fuel.

G.O.A.T. Fuel was born from the lack of a healthy option in the energy and sports drink market. Jerry Rice decided he could find a better solution and that determination lead to the birth of G.O.A.T. Fuel. An energy drink crafted from the very mushrooms that Hymilain goats consume to get more oxygen to their bloodstream. He succeeded in bringing something better to beverage enthusiasts everywhere.

Stage 1 Fund’s partner David Bartholomew had this to say about G.O.A.T. Fuel’s deal, “Stage 1 Fund is pleased to announce our 2nd investment in the emerging beverage silo with our closing of G.O.A.T. Fuel.  In particular, The U.S. energy drink market continues on an explosive path and is projected to be $30 Billion by 2027.  G.O.A.T. Fuel has differentiated itself from the competition by formulating clean energy derived from plant-based adaptogens and has already demonstrated strong growth and velocities via a large distribution network.  We are excited to be partnered with Co-Founders Jaqui Rice Gold & T.J. Gold, as well as the Greatest Of All Time, NFL Hall of Famer, Jerry Rice said Stage 1 Fund Managing Partner, David Bartholomew.”

Katy Triefenbach, CEO at Stage 1 Financial added, “Over the past several months Stage 1 Financial tracked a significant decrease in the amount of invested capital in the beverage silo. However, Stage 1 Fund saw a unique market opportunity for G.O.A.T.  Fuel to take a leadership position in the growing segment of adaptogen Energy Drinks. Similar to what we saw in Lemon Perfect three years ago, G.O.A.T Fuel’s strong leadership team and unique flavor profile allow them to stand out among competitor brands entering the market. We are thrilled to partner with G.O.A.T. Fuel and project significant near-term achievements for the brand.” 

This round of funding will be their first infusion of institutional growth capital and marks a significant shift in success for G.O.A.T. Fuel.

Greatest of All Time. The Energy Drink that Fuels Your Greatness. Tap into the Frequency. Tap into the Mindset. Tap into YOUR Greatness. No sugar, no preservatives, no aspartame, NO EXCUSES. To learn more about their brand or to find their products please visit

Stage 1 Fund has built a robust and proprietary pipeline of deal flow through its affiliate Stage 1 Financial, which provides outsourced corporate services to consumer companies that are potential investment candidates. This unique and advantageous model applies quantitative and qualitative protocols via the core business of Stage 1 Financial, thereby heavily vetting potential investment opportunities prior to deploying capital. Stage 1 Fund is also focused on consumer brands that are driven by sustainability, environmental concerns, female and minority-founded companies. Learn more at

For more information, contact David Bartholomew –

SOURCE Stage 1 Fund
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Bond Pet Foods Fetches New Funding

Our partners at Bond Pet Foods deserve a lot of praise as they secure their Series A round of funding for $17.5 million. They have a new facility that will have its production expanded and new product lines that will be added thanks to this new infusion of cash. 

Bond Pet Foods is “Reimagining pet nutrition so people, pets, farm animals, and the planet all win. We are an Ally For All Animals.”  Check out their products and learn more at

Stage 1 Financial began with Bond during their early R&D days and could not be more excited about their growth and our continued partnership. 

Read Bond Pet Food’s full press release here.


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Munk Pack lands new funding

The powerhouse snack bar brand and our close partners Munk Pack have landed a new round of funding, $5 million! 

Michelle and Tobias Glienke are the wife-and-husband team that created the delicious Munk Pack brand and products. They began this venture because of the lack of healthy snacks that were low in sugar but high in taste. Theirs was the first Keto Granola Bar as well as the first Keto Nut & Seed Bar. 

“We are pleased to see our products resonating with such a broad consumer base, and we believe that our simultaneous distribution and velocity increases attest to that,” says Tobias (originally shared in their press release through Business Wire).

With strong sales and distribution, they are primed to continue growing with this new investment. You can find their products in 11,000 locations nationwide. Check out their products and learn more at

Read Munk Pack’s full press release here.


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Lemon Perfect has juiced more Funding

When you give Lemon Perfect some lemons, they make a big pitcher of funding out of it.

Equally as impressive as the funding is where some of the funding came from—Beyoncé!  In Lemon Perfect’s press release, they shared this quote from her: “I don’t typically enjoy drinks without added sugar, but Lemon Perfect is delicious,” said Knowles-Carter. “It was an easy decision to invest in something that not only tastes great and is healthy, but also, and most importantly, allows choosing a healthier lifestyle to be affordable and accessible to everyone.”

Lemon Perfect has just closed its Series A round of funding for $31 million. This new infusion of cash will allow Lemon Perfect to scale the brand’s distribution to exceed 40,000 points before the close of 2022.

“Stage 1 Fund initially invested in the Seed Round of Lemon Perfect, and it has been incredible to assist in the explosive growth that Yanni and the Lemon Perfect Team have executed thus far.  This is especially impressive considering how tough it is to succeed in the beverage category.  These early milestones are a reflection of Yanni’s tenacity and his willingness to surround himself with experts early on in the process.  Stage 1 Financial & Stage 1 Fund are proud to have provided outsourced support and capital for the brand, and we look forward to Lemon Perfect’s continued success and growth moving forward within the beverage marketplace.  The Company is now well-positioned and capitalized to continue execution on its explosive path,” shared David Bartholomew, a Partner at Stage 1 Fund.

Stage 1 Financial has been a key partner of Lemon Perfect since the very early days. Their commitment to a healthy hydrating solution free of sugar has led them to create a truely delicious beverage.  Check out their products and learn more at

Read Lemon Perfect’s full press release here.


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Scotch Porter comes up big with another investment

There’s no slowing down our good friends at Scotch Porter. Calvin has once again secured a big round of funding that will see Scotch Porter continue their growth in the men’s grooming sector.  This is their Series B round and nets them $11 million in new funding led by Pendulum! Our sister company Stage 1 Fund also contributed to this raise for Scotch Porter.

The Transaction Services team here at Stage 1 Financial played a critical role in securing this funding assisting Scotch Porter in prepping, finding, and vetting the deal. Our Transaction Services team brings the skills and experience that small consumer businesses need to raise capital. 

Scotch Porter aims to use this new capital to scale its operations, which will help to level the playing field for them with the big players in the market. They will also seek to expand their product line as well, so keep an eye out for more fantastic products from them in the future. 

The founder of Scotch Porter, Calvin Quallis, began this enterprise by quitting his job and opening his own barbershop. He wanted to follow his passion for making people feel their best, and this led him to experiment at home to create new, better products. Flash forward to today and Scotch Porter is a fast-growing men’s personal care brand that stays true to its roots. Check out their products at

Read Scotch Porter’s full press release here.


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Made By Nacho Secures Funding

A major success has come to Made by Nacho as they closed a Series A round of funding led by CAVU Venture Partners. This $14 million investment comes as no surprise as Made by Nacho has quickly established itself as a strong pet food brand, backed by celebrity chef Bobby Flay and his famous cat Nacho.

They continue to be focused on providing innovation and aim to be the first true lifestyle brand for cats. These added funds will enable Made by Nacho to expand their offerings from their current four categories and 27 SKUs.

“We are happy for the Nacho team for securing this deal. This will allow the brand to accelerate its growth and deliver its wonderful product to more consumers. We are excited to be a part of this journey with the Nacho team!” shared Elena Minton, a CFO at Stage 1 Financial.

The future is looking bright for Made by Nacho. Cat owners owe it to their lovable pets to give this quality product a try. All of us at Stage 1 Financial are grateful to be a part of Made by Nacho’s journey, and we are extremely pleased to see them succeed and secure this much-needed round of funding.


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Splendid Spoon gets another helping of capital

Splendid Spoon has been making big moves in the meal delivery market by focusing on mainly smoothies, bowls, and soups, all of which are plant-based and delicious. They just closed a Series B round of funding in the amount of $12 million, which was led by Nicoya. 

We at Stage 1 Financial can’t wait to see the growth they will be able to achieve with this infusion of cash. Their plans for the added funding include scaling their product line and continuing to hire diverse team members to add valuable perspectives on their business and the market as a whole. 

“We’re extremely pleased to see Splendid Spoon secure this deal. It’s well deserved and will bring them to another level. We’ve loved working with them and look forward to accomplishing even more together,” shared our CEO Katy Triefenbach.

Stage 1 Financial and Splendid Spoon share the unique trait of being female-led, and it’s something we celebrate and encourage. Splendid Spoon has one of the many female founders with whom we work and is a great example of an ambitious startup that is growing fast and making waves in their industry. 


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New funding for Sanzo

It is our great pleasure to announce that our client Sanzo has closed their series A round of funding! They have been doing amazing work in the beverage industry since their inception in 2019. They raised $10 million led by CircleUp Growth Partners and several other investment groups. 

Stage 1 Financial has been a strong believer in Sanzo and its sparkling water. Our Transaction Services team has been working tirelessly with them to obtain this round of funding. It’s been an amazing partnership that just goes to show what can be accomplished when a smart startup teams up with specialists who know the venture capital market. 

Our Head of Transaction Services, Kayleen St John had this to say, “We’re thrilled for Sandro Roco and all of team Sanzo on their latest fundraising milestone! This team is truly unstoppable and the Transaction Services team is proud to have supported the brand through the fundraising process. We’ll all be seeing a lot more from Sanzo as they roll out to nationwide distribution at Whole Foods, Sprouts, and Panda Express this year. Selfishly, we’re also hoping this might mean even more delicious flavors added in the near future– Cheers to team Sanzo!”

This new round of funding will bring new opportunities for Sanzo to expand into new markets and to explore new flavors inspired by Asian fruits and other ingredients from that part of the world. The future is bright for Sanzo and we are excited to be a part of their journey. 


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