CEO Vita Coco EMEA, entrepreneur and investor
Giles Brook is a renowned serial start up & food and drink CEO, entrepreneur & investor and has been a leading factor behind the success of flagship challenger brands such as innocent drinks, BEAR, Vita Coco and Pip & Nut.
Giles is currently CEO of Vita Coco EMEA which he launched in the UK almost a decade ago, the leading coconut water brand tells one of the biggest global success stories in non-alcoholic drinks over the last decade.
Giles also invests in several start-up businesses across food & drinks and wider consumer goods and until recently was a founding partner in Urban Fresh Foods Limited, whose brand, BEAR is the UK’s number one fruit snacking brand & kids lunchbox item. Urban Fresh Foods Limited has appeared twice in The Sunday Times Fast Track 100 list. The brand was acquired by Lotus Bakeries in 2015.
Giles’ unrivalled experience of the food and drink industry was recognised by winning the first ever ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ award at The Grocer Gold Awards and he is the highest-ranked individual on the list outside of global and multi-national CEOs in The Grocer’s ‘Food & Drink Power List’.
Giles is dedicated to helping start-up businesses and regularly takes time out of the office to guide and mentor entrepreneurs, whilst life outside work is all about family and triathlons where he represents GBR and, this year, races his first full iron man.
On being a Startups Awards 2018 judge, Giles has said he “is looking forward to being inspired by the next generation of entrepreneurs and very much hopes that from this years entries, we find one of the UK next big stories in start up business success.”
So what is the drinks mogul looking for from Startups Awards 2018 entries?
“I’m looking for a founder or set of founders who exude passion for their business, brand and consumer.
“A business that has identified that elusive white space or need state that can be better met and clearly knows how to creatively deliver against it.”
What is great about business in Britain?
“Britain, alongside America, leads the way on start-up and entrepreneurial business ventures.
“In Britain, we have an opportunistic approach and the support network for start-ups continues to grow creating a great platform to launch a business from.”