We are pleased to announce the investment of 21 Partners in Ethical Coffee Company (ECC). 21 Centrale Partners organized the transaction with 21 Investimenti, alongside qualified co-investors.Although it is uncommon to see impenetrable monopolistic markets being successfully challenged, ECC has accomplished this feat, distributing a patented coffee capsule compatible with Nespresso machines, thereby granting itself access to a massive existing base of 5.5 million machines.ECC’s product presents a unique value proposition. The consumer benefits from mass availability in food retail networks for a product which is fully biodegradable, 25% cheaper than that of Nespresso, and of high quality, thus appealing to the consumer base which seeks to balance its environmentally conscious disposition with practicality, quality, and affordability.ECC coffee capsules are currently available in some 500 store locations of the Casino retail network, and are the distributor’s best-selling product. The Casino network, which is composed of some 8,600 store locations in France, is being progressively irrigated. International distribution will follow, as the current prospective order book in excess of 4 billion capsules per year reflects the significant interest of top ranking distributors, particularly in France, Switzerland, Germany, and Belgium.The investment of 21 Partners will serve to accelerate the ongoing ramp-up of industrial production capacities, as ECC will acquire an increasing number of production lines and open a second production plant to meet the high level of demand and move forward to international development. With such momentum, ECC is set to definitively establish itself as a major player in the capsulated coffee market.
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