Live Nation Fuels Owen’s Craft Mixers Expansion To Reach Key Concert Destinations
You may have seen Owen’s Craft Mixers at your local Walmart or Publix, or perhaps on the menu at your favorite travel destination, but get ready to see it at the most visited concert venues and festivals.
Today, Owen’s announced a $10 million raise, led by NBA All Star Jimmy Butler and Live Nation, the world’s leading live entertainment company. Alongside the increase comes its strategic partnership with over 100 Live Nation amphitheatres, clubs, theaters and festivals as a preferred mixing partner.
I sat down with Owen’s co-founder, Josh Miller, to discuss why he and his brother-in-law, Tyler Holland, started out with a vision of making the tastiest ginger beer. He also shared how he scaled a leading mixer brand from a kitchen in New York to over 20,000 store doors, concert halls, sports arenas and tourist destinations across the United States.
What is Owens Craft Blender?
We are a fun, accessible and engaging brand that aims to innovate classic and trendy cocktails and/or mocktails. In retail and now with Live Nation as a key partner, we aim to reach millions of users with our bold packaging, versatility and flavors.
Tell me why you and Tyler started the business?
Our great-great-grandfather Owen’s entrepreneurial spirit has always inspired us. He owned a bar/general store serving cocktails in Portland, Maine in the 18th century. Combining our family history with our frustration of finding a decent-tasting ginger beer mule in our New York neighborhood was really how Owen’s was born.
When did you know you had the best ginger beer recipe?
We started in 2015 with many unsuccessful attempts in Tyler’s Greenwich Village kitchen. It wasn’t until 2016 that we had perfected it after hosting tasting parties and meetings with top mixologists to help us find the real ingredient concoction that delivers quality you can taste, pour after pour.
How did you come to a strategic partnership with Live Nation?
Owen’s traditional track record is built on access and ease of delivering consistently high quality cocktails – for both consumers and bartenders. Live Nation was no different. His venues started using our mixers back in 2019 and his concert-goers and staff have loved the cocktail experience. Now, with the return of experiential events, shows and festivals, Owen’s is becoming Live Nation’s mixer brand of choice and will be making a presence at leading festivals like Tortuga this April.
From the start of the pandemic, I can see Owen’s genuine dedication to the sport, especially golf. Tell me more.
Sporting and live events have always been at the heart of the brand, but golf served as a strategic move during the pandemic. It was the only sports destination to remain open statewide, so we partnered with Barstool Sports to enter the market with a transfusion blender that was instantly available at the nation’s most established golf courses such as Pinehurst, Pebble Beach Resorts, Kohler Golf, Streamsong and PGA West.
Outside of golf, you’ll also find us at top stadiums like Citi Field in NYC, Levi’s Stadium in San Jose, or on-site at the Miami Open or select PGA Tour events.
Espresso martinis are still in trend. How does Owen make this cocktail more accessible?
We launched our nitro-infused espresso martini mix in late 2022 and it has quickly become the most sought-after mixer in our retail fleet and particularly in hospitality groups such as Groot Hospitality, Levy Restaurants Venues, Circa Las Vegas and Venetian Resorts. Travelers across the country can also find Owen’s Espresso Martinis at their local airports through HMSHost, the largest airport concessionaire, and at destinations like Omni Hotel & Resorts.
Where can people who don’t travel and want to mix cocktails at home find Owens premium mixers?
We have a retail presence at national retailers such as Publix, Walmart, CVS, Kroger, Total Wine and Amazon stocking our core collection from Ginger Beer to Sparkling Margarita and American Tonic to Cucumber Mint.
How did travel inspire where Owen’s is stored?
Ultimately, our goal is to have Owen’s at every travel touchpoint, from local airport bars and concert halls to luxury hotels and resorts. We know that once people try Owen’s, they are instantly loyal. Based on the simplicity of our mixer coupled with retail accessibility, travelers have access to create these specialty cocktails in the comfort of their own home.
What are your favorite destinations to sip an Owen’s cocktail?
A transfusion at the Cradle at Pinehurst Resort, an espresso martini at the Green Briar Golf Course, a Paloma at the Strawberry Moon Pool, a mule at the Crypto.com Arena, or an Owen’s G&T at our Portland Maine home bar, the Porthole.
follow me Twitter. Cash my website.