HAMILTON, N.J. – Ken Kurtz, a beverage industry leader who has built major brands across the alcohol and non-alcohol landscape, has been named President of Crook & Marker, a new spiked and sparkling brand created by beverage innovator Ben Weiss.
“Ken is a superstar known throughout the beverage industry for his brand-building acumen, his incomparable work ethic and the deep respect he has earned from colleagues, employees and business partners,” said Weiss, Crook & Marker’s Founder and CEO. “He will bring his extraordinary style of passionate leadership to the business as we embark on our national launch and charge toward our goal of creating a suite of alcoholic beverages that meet the demands of today’s consumer.”
Crook & Marker drinks are the only spiked and sparkling beverages of their kind: Zero sugar. Made with organic alcohol. Overflowing with bold, refreshing flavor. The brand is launching nationally this spring with eight bold fruit flavors, with availability in major retailers including Target, Kroger, Whole Foods, Giant Eagle and Harris Teeter.
Kurtz joins Crook & Marker after nine years with Bai Brands, where he served as president since 2013 and led the sales team as Bai, which was founded by Weiss, became the fastest-growing brand in the beverage industry.
In his new role, Kurtz will provide strategic direction for Crook & Marker by working with Weiss and the company’s executive team to establish aggressive growth targets and develop a world-class team across all business functions.
“I look forward to working alongside Ben and my new colleagues to build this extraordinary brand,” he said. “Crook & Marker beverages are like nothing else on the market – certainly not another hard seltzer – because they deliver the combination of flavor, variety and transparency that today’s consumers demand. After more than two decades of building beverage brands, I can say that Crook & Marker is extremely well positioned to have a major impact on the alcohol beverage space.”
Prior to joining Bai, Kurtz was Senior Vice President at Fiji Water and held sales leadership roles with premium beverage companies including Boston Beer Co. and E & J Gallo Winery.
About Crook & Marker
Crook & Marker drinks are the only spiked and sparkling beverages of their kind: Zero sugar. Made with organic alcohol. Overflowing with bold, refreshing flavor. Crook & Marker’s organic BaseBrew™ alcohol is made from ancient grains – including quinoa, amaranth and millet – and cassava root. This brew is finely filtered and perfectly polished, then blended with natural flavors and vibrant colors. Crook & Marker beverages are sweetened from natural sources, gluten-free, non-GMO and vegan, with 80 calories per can and 4 percent alcohol by volume. Crook & Marker beverages are available in 8 luscious flavors: Black Cherry, Tangerine, Strawberry Lemon, Blackberry Lime, Grapefruit, Mango, Peach and Coconut Pineapple.
More information about Crook & Marker is available at www.crookandmarker.com. Follow Crook & Marker on Instagram and Facebook.