Bridget Coates, co-founder of Kura™, announced the appointment of industry leader Kelli Rooney to chief executive officer, effective Oct. 1, 2016. Rooney joined Kura in June from New Chapter, Inc., where she served most recently as senior vice president of sales and business development.

Kura, a US company with roots in New Zealand, introduced its delicious, customizable varieties of New Zealand sourced, grass-fed dairy protein smoothie powders with complete nutrition in January 2015, and the line is currently available nationwide.

Rooney joins Kura with more than 20 years of senior financial, sales and marketing experience. Over the past 14 years, she has held senior management positions for Vermont-based New Chapter, a respected formulator, producer, packager, and distributor of whole-food cultured nutrients and herbal formulations.

Rooney directly supported New Chapter’s revenue growth from $1.7 million to $100 million, resulting in the company’s position as market leader in the natural products industry according to SPINS, a leading provider of retail consumer insights and analytics for the natural, organic and specialty products industry. Rooney successfully introduced several significant product launches, continually sourcing the highest quality natural, sustainably harvested international ingredients. She was central to New Chapter’s mergers and acquisitions, including the 2012 acquisition of the brand by Procter & Gamble, the largest consumer packaged goods company in the world.

“Kelli’s expertise in identifying, developing and growing premium innovative health and wellness brands is a tremendous advantage for Kura. Her passion for building a company that respects and nurtures its people, its customers and the environment is imperative for our long-term success,” says Coates.

Coates, a native of New Zealand, will continue to be closely involved in the business as chair of the board of directors for Kura’s parent company, New Zealand-based White Cloud Dairy Innovation Ltd.

Committed to Innovation-Driven Growth
“Kura’s founding principles reflect the company’s deep respect for the nature of nature,” says Rooney. “There are few true visionaries in this industry and we believe Kura is a member of that elite group.”

Rooney, who references Kura’s expansion from 500 to more than 5,000 retail doors since its launch in 2015, anticipates triple digit growth for the company over the next two years.

“We’ll grow our business by focusing on our people, our products and the planet. This is the philosophy that will succeed in the coming years, partnered with a drive to deliver exciting, relevant and first-to-market products.”

“We anticipate strong market opportunities to build a ‘Kurated’ and creative category of differentiated and truly great-tasting protein smoothie powders,” says Rooney.