June 20, 2024
Jessica Fisher

Brew Dr.’s KeHE sales surge with Crisp insights

Brew Dr. Kombucha tapped into real-time distribution insights with Crisp, strengthening its supplier partnership and accelerating market success.

Born out of a chain of Portland-based teahouses, Brew Dr. Kombucha has bubbled into a nationwide favorite, combining refreshing flavors with everyday convenience. Whether grabbing a single beverage or stocking up on fridgetastic four-packs, this ready-to-drink (RTD) brand’s rise has been fueled by strategic partnerships with distributors like KeHE, unlocking opportunities across major grocery chains.

Supporting this expansion are real-time distribution insights in Crisp, providing Brew Dr. unparalleled visibility into its supply chain. The data fuels decision-making, allowing the company to seamlessly navigate its product journey from warehouse to distribution center, finally landing on a store shelf near you. The result? A banner year of impressive growth and expansion.

Data bottleneck

Alyssa Domek, Sales Planning Manager at Brew Dr. Kombucha, and Bryan Wilson, Director of Grocery Sales, recall their challenges before Crisp. Vast amounts of raw data were pulled from vendor portals, requiring pivot tables and tedious manual processes to make sense of it all. “Only a couple of us understood the data reporting process,” Alyssa explains, “which created a bottleneck that slowed down sales planning.”

Bryan adds that, “We also lacked clear visibility into inventory levels across distribution centers (DCs), and had to forecast orders based on outdated information.” 

With ambitious plans for 2023 – including a rebrand and exciting new product launches – the team needed a streamlined data solution to accelerate market response. 

A trial of the Crisp retail data platform and its integration with KeHE provided a new level of clarity needed to excel.

A new data culture

Crisp has become an integral tool, transforming operations and fostering collaboration across the Brew Dr. Kombucha organization.  

When it comes to ensuring distribution centers (DCs) are always stocked with top-selling SKUs like Clear Mind, Love, and Superberry kombuchas, as well as new products like Sipjoy probiotic refresher seltzers, Crisp offers unparalleled visibility. “We can see when on-hand inventory is running low in Crisp, and promptly adjust POs with our buyers and logistics team” Alyssa explains.

“KeHE appreciates that we have such a strong grasp of our business, and we find it enhances our relationship.”

What’s more, Brew Dr.’s Logistics team leverages data in the platform to optimize delivery routes, maximizing truckloads and saving on costs.

Beyond supply chain applications, the Crisp platform analytics support strategic growth. The platform extends its benefits to the marketing team, providing heat maps that illustrate all points of distribution (PODs). These insights inform targeted digital campaigns on platforms like Instacart, helping boost velocity in strong markets, and fueling brand awareness in areas with growth potential.

Rising results

Brew Dr. Kombucha’s year-over-year success with KeHE, powered by Crisp insights, has been remarkable. The brand saw transformation growth, including a 30% YOY sales increase and a 41% rise in points of distribution (PODs).

Key wins include:

  • HEB: A 41% sales growth, with the Dallas Fort Worth distribution center up 56%.
  • Meijer: Entering this new Midwest market proved incredibly successful, seeing a 696% surge in sales growth, with Illinois’s ROM DC up 106%.
  • Core SKUs: Clear Mind, Superberry, and Island Mango kombuchas all saw double-digit YOY growth (+16%, +32%, +22% respectively).

The brand’s commitment to innovation also paid off:

  • New flavors: Steeped in market research, new fruit-forward kombucha flavors Strawberry Fields and Pineapple Paradise achieved distribution at 1413 PODs.
  • Sipjoy Probiotic Refreshers: Launched in Sprouts in December 2023, these crushable, lightly sweetened seltzers quickly picked up 992 PODs.

In addition to bringing these sales metrics to life, Crisp’s insights drove operational efficiency, boosting in-store fill rates – from 91% to an impressive 96% YOY, recovering lost sales while ensuring consumers always find their favorite beverage. 

Refreshing outlook

Brew Dr. Kombucha’s success with Crisp and KeHE highlights the importance of agility in a competitive market. The brand’s commitment to innovation, paired with real-time data insights, allows them to optimize operations, execute new product launches, and continue responding to evolving market trends.

“With Crisp, we get a holistic view of what’s going on with our business,” Alyssa emphasizes, “by seeing our granular data visually, all in one spot.”

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