Drink Up

From cans of Whoopass energy drink to Berry White juice, Seattle-based Jones Soda Co. reflects the offbeat personality of its founder.
This story first appeared in the September 2001 issue of Entrepreneur. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

Vital Stats:Peter van Stolk, 38, founder

Company: Juice and soda manufacturer started in 1996

2001 Sales: $33 million

Strange Brew: "The concept for the flavors comes from consumers, but we test them out. Every Friday, everybody in the company drinks soda and juice."

Indie Soda Wars: "Without SoBe tea being bought out [by Pepsico], we wouldn't have been able to move the brand as fast as we have. Independent distributors [were looking for a new line of alternative beverages], because a big piece of their business was gone. We go to launches where distributors take sledgehammers to SoBe's coolers. It's personal. It's passionate. You can't buy that enthusiasm."

Office Space: "When people come into my office, they see a big painting by [pop artist] ManWoman of a guy in a little gray outfit juggling skulls. It's whacked out."

What a Trip: "I was a 22-year-old ski instructor, and I sold my car and bought some orange juice from Florida and sold that [in Canada]. You get on this journey, and it's just one crazy ride after the next. It's pretty exciting."

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