Image source: http://www.revommerce.com/
Boca Raton-based energy drink company Celsius Holdings has moved up to trading its stock on the Nasdaq Capital Market, where it must meet certain asset, stock price and disclosure requirements.
The company’s stock previously was traded over the counter, not a major exchange.
John Fieldly, interim CEO and chief financial officer of Celsius, is scheduled to ring the Nasdaq market opening bell on Tuesday, in celebration of the company’s stock listing. The stock began trading May 24 on Nasdaq under the symbol is CELH. On Friday, the stock closed at $4.07 a share.
Fieldly said the Nasdaq listing is a “major milestone in the evolution of our company.” In recent years, Celsius has re-branded its products as health and fitness drinks, and has growing sales in the retail market, he said.
“Moving to Nasdaq will build additional value for shareholders and more liquidity. It’s the next chapter in the company’s evolution,” he said.
Fieldly, who has been the company’s CFO for more than five years, has been working with former CEO Gerry David to turn around Celsius. David recently retired from the company and Celsius is searching for a new top executive.
“What we have today is truly a viable company that has key customers, reorders, and is expanding domestically,” Fieldly said.
The company had 2016 sales of $22.76 million, up 32 percent from $17.2 million in 2015, according to its regulatory filing.
Celisus also raised $15 million in financing in its first quarter with new investors including Horizon Ventures of Hong Kong, Fieldly said.
Celsius, which employs 40 people in Boca Raton, was turned around with the help of investor Carl DeSantis. The South Florida entrepreneur previously built Rexall Sundown, a Boca Raton maker of vitamins and nutritional supplements that eventually was acquired by Nature’s Bounty.
“He was a believer when [the company] was in dire traits. If it weren’t for Carl, this company would be here today,” Fieldly said.
Celsius was developed and launched its first drinks in 2005. By 2011, Celsius had burned through $19 million in investments and lost its contract with Costco, a move that cut revenues in half.
DeSantis bought out founder and then-CEO Steven Haley and hired David. In turn, David recruited Fieldly, who had worked with him at Tampa-based biotech company Oragenics.
The new management team led two private placements totaling $31.5 million with investors including Chinese billionaire Li Ka-Shing, hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and Carl DeSantis. Celsius established a subsidiary in Hong Kong and plans to launch this year in Hong Kong, Macau. The products are manufactured in North Carolina as well as Dusseldorf, Germany; and China.
Celsius’ product has been touted in ads including billboards as “fat-burning” and “calorie-reducing.” The drinks, in seven flavors, contain caffeine, a green tea chemical, ginger, calcium, chromium, and vitamins.
While Fieldly said the formula hasn’t changed for the drink, Celsius is now focused on the health and fitness markets, marketing the drink as a “fitness drink that accelerates metabolism, burns body fat and provides ‘health’ energy.”
But Celsius notes on its website that “Celsius alone does not produce weight loss in the absence of a healthy diet and moderate exercise.”
Consumer Health Digest, an online site that reviews consumer health products, calls Celsius more of an “energy” drink than a diet supplement and warns the drink can result in “jitteriness, anxiety, insomnia, heart palpitations and slight dizziness.”