Croatian Brand Wins Over Scandinavia, Netherlands, USA

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As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes on the 4th of October, 2020, Nika Pintar and Bruno Balen, the founders of the Croatian startup Cidrani, presented the Niksen brand to the market – it is an instant cold brew coffee powder, 1.5 espresso. It is a Croatian startup that has a vision to make every food a superfood, and the team currently has five employees and about twenty external associates. Cidrani has been around since last year, and in the middle of the coronavirus crisis, they launched their very first products on the market.

No sugar needed

”Niksen is a wellbeing concept for stress prevention, and we draw inspiration for Niksen from our lifestyle, daily training and learning about the latest trends in the world of functional food, the optimisation of mental performance and longevity. We see the quality of tomorrow’s diet as a necessary fuel so that we can start working towards realising our greatest potential right now. That’s why we’re the first to bring instant cold brew coffee powder to the European market, and what sets Niksen Cold Brew apart from other coffees is that it is soluble in cold water, which makes it easy to use and adapted to today’s hectic, urban lifestyle. In addition, research shows that cold brew coffee is easier on the body due to its cold brewing process, which lasts up to 16 hours, as a result, it is even up to 70 percent less acidic and therefore sits better when in the stomach. This is also felt in the taste, which is dominated by caramel and chocolate notes, which don’t require the addition of sugar. Cidrani’s Niksen Cold Brew has been on the market for less than two months, and we’re achieving a monthly growth of about 300 percent. By the end of the year, we expect a presence in more than 200 locations in Croatia, with our primary focus being on market education,” explained Pintar and Balen.

Along with Cold Brew, Niksen also offers Nut-Hazel organic snacks made of hazelnuts and the first Croatian Nootropics, natural food supplements with complex formulas that are a combination of plant extracts, vitamins and minerals. The raw materials, they say, are chosen according to the criterion of excellence, and Niksen Cold Brew coffee blend is a premium coffee from Colombia and Ethiopia and is bottled in Croatia. It can be bought on theirr web shop and in specialised stores.

”Our goal is to produce 300,000 coffees a year, which we plan to achieve in a year and by launching five new flavour variations that will come to be by the end of the year. We started with the Croatian market, but we’ve already started expanding to Europe, with a focus on the Netherlands, Sweden and Finland, given that these countries are at the top of the list in terms of annual coffee consumption by population. We’ve already exported the first lot to the Netherlands and Sweden and started a soft launch on those markets. We’re members of the Amsterdam Kitchen Republic Community, thanks to which we have the opportunity to present ourselves to the leading retail and HoReCa chains in the Netherlands, which we’re actively working on and we expect the first collaborations by the end of the year. Furthermore, we’re part of the Future of Food regional cluster of startups for export to the USA, within which we’re preparing for the development of markets outside of Europe in cooperation with mentors from the American functional food industry,” revealed Cidrani’s Pintar and Balen.

They also mentioned a number of advantages for cafes, restaurants and hotels. For example, the shelf life of their cold brew is 18 months, it doesn’t require a cold chain during transport or storage, unlike regular cold brew coffee, and it can be added to cocktails, juices and smoothies in an instant. Packaging in disposable bags at the same time saves electricity consumption and facilitates preparation so that it doesn’t require a cooker or the extra time and human capital required by room service.

”The plan is to expand the line with functional powders based on plant extracts for strong cognitive performance and inner beauty, thus creating coffee-based beverages that are also dietary supplements. We believe that the cosmetics of the future will be our diet and this is the basis of our philosophy of choosing only high-quality ingredients with a proven beneficial effect on the body. At the 17th Progressive Conference on October the 21st at the Esplanade Hotel in Zagreb, Bruno will present a case study called How to start a successful business in times of global crisis – five principles of creating innovation, where he’ll also present the vision of Niksen’s development. Although we started with food products, we want to create an optimal and rounded holistic concept that includes nutrition, movement and education that encourage the development of creativity, cognitive performance and neurogenesis,” concluded Cidrani’s Pintar.

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