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|Caribbean-born rum entrepreneur, Mark Farrell, has secured an equity investment from the Diageo-backed incubator Pronghorn.
It was the first investment for Pronghorn. The Caribbean rum brand Ten to One was founded by and is owned by Farrell, and co-owned by Grammy winning singer Ciara, who joined the rum brand in October 2021 as an investor, co-owner and director.
The award-winning Ten To One Caribbean rum was founded in 2019 by the entrepreneur and former youngest Starbucks Senior Vice President. His impressive resume started when he was merely a teenager. He attended MIT at just 16-years-old, followed by Cambridge University and Harvard Business School, all before becoming, at the time, the youngest ever vice president in Starbucks history.
The name Ten To One comes from a quote from Dr. Eric Williams, Trinidad and Tobago’s first Prime Minister, when discussing the first Caribbean federation of 10 countries. “One from ten leaves zero,” he said, conveying the idea that “we are stronger together than apart.”
Through his creation, Farrell said he hopes to elevate the experience of consuming Caribbean rum and highlight its versatility.
In just a short period of time, Ten To One Caribbean rum has received critical acclaim from the likes of Food & Wine, Forbes and Zagat for its exquisite pan-Caribbean blends as well as the brand’s role in shifting the rum category to a more elevated and authentic reflection of Caribbean culture. The Ten To One white rum costs almost $37 while the Ten To One Dark rum is almost $49.
“Continuously challenging expectations has been core to our brand’s DNA from day one, and proven to be a major ingredient in preserving on a path to success – even against the backdrop of a global pandemic,” said Farrell. “There remains an enormous opportunity to change the way people taste, experience and talk about rum, and with the incredible support of the Pronghorn team, we will not only be able to expand our footprint to other major metropolitan hubs, but also introduce consumers to new occasions for which rum should be considered the spirit of choice.”
“Pronghorn’s team are spirits industry game-changers,” said Ciara, Co-Owner, Ten To One. “It’s rewarding to see these creative minds rally around a brand and a mission that I am so passionate about and enable a path to excellence that uplifts and supports Black entrepreneurs.”
“Pronghorn’s goal is to cultivate the next generation of Black entrepreneurs, executive leaders, and founders within the spirits industry. We are thrilled to kick off the first of 57 investments in Black-owned spirits brands that will be made over the next ten years with Ten To One Rum,” said Erin Harris, Co-Founder, Pronghorn. “Diverse representation in entrepreneurship will drive innovation, and Ten To One is a leading example of that through its continued reimagination of the rum category.”
According to Pronghorn, less than 1 percent of spirits brand acquisitions in the U.S have been Black owned. To generate wealth and drive acquisitions, Pronghorn will serve as a hybrid incubator and accelerator, making capital investments in Black owned brands, while also providing capabilities that allow brands to leverage industry-leading knowledge and resources to realize their brand’s ambitions.
ISWR says the U.S. market for Super Premium+ rum brands is projected to have a compound annual growth rate of 12.6% from 2021 to 2026 and to grow 2x faster than the spirits industry over the next 5 years.
Ten To One is available at retailers in nearly 20 states across the country, and online at www.shoptentoone.com. (newsamericanow)