Since September, LaCroix — the wildly popular sparkling water that rose from obscure midwestern mom-dom to immense popularity among millennials — has seen a 23% drop in its stock price.
And it seems that was a little too much for company’s head honcho to handle: last week, Nick Caporella, the CEO of National Beverage Corp. (which owns LaCroix) sent out a press release that defied every executive convention.
“FIZZ revenues have grown 60% over the last ten years,” he wrote. “ALL ORGANIC GROWTH – NO ACQUISITIONS! Organic growth has now ACCELERATED! ….First quarter 2018 – BEST EVER! Second quarter growth – STEADFAST!”
Uhh… who is this guy?
Caporella grew up poor in rural Pennsylvania, the son of a coal miner.
In 1957, at 21, he “scraped together” $250, bought a used dragline excavator, and started his own contracting business. By 1972, he’d built it into a multi-million dollar operation and was acquired by telecom giant, Burnup & Sims. Four years later, he was the firm’s CEO.
He launched National Beverage in 1985 and gradually bought out other beverage firms — including LaCroix in 1996. Now 81, he owns 74% of the company and is one of the 400 richest men in America.
Usually, prominent businessmen play it safe…
Not Cap’n Fizzy. His latest quip is part of a long, long lineage of very strange press releases he’s made over the years…
Like in this 2013 earnings report, in which he complained of “picnics, sickening explosions and weeks of tornados.” Or, this 2012 release, where he promises to “symbolically claim [his] victims” in the cola industry.
Then, there’s this gem: “Good soft drinks are to the human race what sunshine is to a panic!… Precious rainbows usually require both rain and sunshine!”
What’s his deal?
Our best guess: he’s either an octogenarian who is slowly but surely entering the phase of his life where he no longer gives a friggin’ hoot — or, he’s a staunch believer in the theory that weird marketing sells (a la the late Emmanuel Bronner, who peppered his Dr. Bronner’s soap products with incredibly strange sayings and quotes).
Either way, we’re here writing about him. So, it worked.