Back in 2016, Matt Czarnecki, then a sophomore at Yale University, found himself exhausted after studying for an exam one night. He needed a caffeine boost and his only option was a coffee shop, where he reluctantly handed over $6 for a coffee and some granola. He asked himself: Why isn't there a simpler, healthier, cheaper alternative? Czarnecki tossed some ideas around with his classmates Bennett Byerley and André Monteiro and, that semester, the students started experimenting with caffeinated energy bar recipes in their dorm kitchen.
How Yale students launched a caffeinated energy bar company from their dorm—and raised $1.4 million to turn it into a business
Yale undergrads created delicious, 90-calorie energy bars with as much caffeine as an espresso
Three current Yale undergrads, Matt Czarnecki, Bennett Byerley, and André Monteiro, didn't want to sit around simply complaining about ineffective energy solutions (or all the money wasted on them). In the spring of 2016, they started experimenting with caffeinated energy bar recipes in their dorm room kitchen. The guiding philosophy behind the recipes was that simple is better. Could they create bars that made people more energized, while sticking to ingredients everyone knows and recognizes? After more than 100 tries, they did land on the perfect combination and started handing the bars out to friends. It was clear they had to take it to scale once they rented a local bakery to make energy bars during its off-hours and still couldn't keep up with demand.
Verb Re-Energizes With New Line and Rebrand
Coming off a $1 million investment round, caffeinated snack maker Verb Energy is evolving to get consumers to think beyond the cup for their afternoon pick-me-up. The caffeinated, green tea-based snack brand announced today that it has rebranded, revised its product line from bars to bites and has further built out it’s ordering system. The goal is to shake its collegiate vibe and resonate with a new core, caffeine seeking consumer as its founders graduate and relocate the company’s headquarters from the Yale University campus to Boston. This rebrand and platform expansion was, in part, funded by the nearly $1 million of capital that Verb raised earlier this year from investors including Global Founders Capital, Great Oaks Venture Capital, Vast Ventures and a syndicate of angel investors including Kevin Ryan, the founder of Business Insider.
Verb Aims to Change the Morning Pick-Me-Up With Caffeinated Energy Bars
NBC News- I’ve always been a health nut, and about a year and a half ago at a coffee shop on Yale’s campus, I bought a coffee and a granola bar and paid over $6. I asked myself, why can’t I pull this out of my backpack, and why isn’t there a more convenient and less expensive way to get healthy energy? I pitched the idea of a maximally convenient way to get caffeine plus food to an entrepreneurial incubator, Yale Launch, that I had started on campus. Two of my co-founders, Andre Monteiro and Bennett Byerley joined me from the founding class of the incubator, and we got to work in campus kitchens. Isaac Morrier, who was our last co-founder and just graduated, joined the team in September.