LOS ANGELES, Aug. 19, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- NBA All-Star Chris Paul continues to pursue his plant-based mission with a financial investment in Koia, leaders in 100% plant-based nutrition shakes. This investment furthers Paul's goal of providing better access to healthy foods to all and promoting the benefits he personally experiences from a plant-based lifestyle.
Paul adds Koia to his portfolio of plant-based brands making a difference in his life and the lives of others, including his investment in Beyond Meat. Since starting the transition to a plant-based diet in 2019, Paul has noticed substantial improvement to his overall health, performance, and recovery both on and off the court.
Paul and Koia share a mission of making plant-based nutrition available to everyone, especially communities who lack access to healthy, low-sugar food options. As a first step in achieving their mission, Paul and Koia will introduce a Koia vending machine program on HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) campuses focusing on campuses with which Paul has relationships. The initial pilot program will take place this year with a broader roll-out in 2022.
In addition to the HBCU program, Paul has made a commitment to purchasing 50,000 bottles of Koia Straw-nana Dream Smoothie, the best-selling flavor of Koia's newest and most successful innovation line, for GoPuff customers nationally. Paul has an investment and partnership with GoPuff and Koia is currently the top-selling better-for-you beverage sold on the platform. This three-way partnership between Paul, Koia and GoPuff is an example of how celebrities and brands can collaborate to affect meaningful change in the food and beverage industry.
Koia is fueling the consumer trend of a shift toward healthier, low sugar options, and is on track to remove 4 million pounds of sugar from the category by 2021. Koia continues to experience exponential growth both in terms of sales and retail expansion, specifically 800% increase in sales since 2017 and record-setting sales in Q2 2021 exceeding a $40M run rate. Koia is now available in over 16,000 stores ranging from Whole Foods to Walmart and continues to expand nationally within key retail partners like 7-Eleven to maximize accessibility for consumers.
"My hope for investing in Koia and other changemakers in the industry is that we work together toward a bigger systemic culture shift where underserved communities have access and opportunity to live better, healthier lives," said Paul.
"We are thrilled to partner with Chris Paul because he's an exceptional human being on and off the court, embodying the power of plant-based nutrition," said Chris Hunter, Co-founder and CEO of Koia. "We are aligned with Paul around a vision of the future where everyone has access to healthy food and look forward to working together to make that a reality."
Koia and Paul look forward to a long-term partnership that will include other broad scale programs and initiatives to reinforce this shared mission.
Koia = truly delicious, healthy, convenient, low-sugar/low net carbs, plant-based beverages that come ready-to-drink with no mixing or stirring required. Koia uses only high-quality ingredients to deliver a balance of complete plant protein, fiber, and healthy fats for sustained satiation and energy at any time of the day. All Koia flavors are 100-percent plant-based, dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free, vegan, and Non-GMO Project verified. Koia offers three lines of beverages to cater to nearly everybody's nutritional needs: Koia Protein, Koia Keto, and Koia Smoothie. For more information, visit drinkkoia.com and Koia's Instagram and Facebook.
About Chris Paul
Chris Paul is an eleven-time NBA All-Star and two-time Olympic Gold medalist. Paul currently plays with the Phoenix Suns and previously played with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, and New Orleans Hornets. Off the court, he's a father, husband, entrepreneur, activist, and philanthropist. He recently ended his tenure as the President of the National Basketball Players Association, which began in 2013. His business partnerships include the Jordan Brand, State Farm Insurance, Turner Impact Capital, Muzik, WTRMLN WTR, Beyond Meat, PlayersTV, Uncharted Power, Calm, Fanatics, Knowable, goPuff, Panini Cards, and more. In his home state of North Carolina, he is part owner of the Winston-Salem Dash and owner of the CP3 Basketball Academy. He is the co-founder of Go Hoop Day, a day for celebrating the game of basketball worldwide, and he co-hosts The Baha Mar Showdown, the annual celebrity golf showcase created by Turner Sports and CAA Sports. His production company, Ohh Dip!!! Productions, creates content across multiple platforms and Paul has executive produced projects including Chapter 3, Crossroads, The Game Changers, Blackballed, Why Not Us: NC Central Men's Basketball, The Day Sports Stood Still, American Sole, and The Chris Paul Project. Ohh Dip!!! co-produces Bloomberg Quicktake's How I Got Here, an in-depth weekly one-on-one interview series hosted by Paul and debuting this fall. His upcoming memoir, Sixty-One: Life Lessons from Papa, On and Off the Court, is a powerful and unexpected memoir of family, faith, tragedy, and life's most important lessons. The Chris Paul Family Foundation continues to provide resources that enrich and strengthen underserved communities across the country. Paul co-launched the Social Change Fund dedicated to investing in and supporting organizations focused on empowering communities of color and advocating for the human rights of all black lives. His philanthropic efforts have earned him the 2016 ESPYs "Humanitarian of the Year" award, 2016 Mannie Jackson Human Spirit Award and the NBA Community Assist Award five times.