BevNET Live Winter 2022: The Gospel of Gross Margin, with Sharelle Klaus, CEO of Dry Soda


Concerns about access to capital are growing in the CPG world and many beverage companies are finding that investments, even when they do occur, are coming at lower earnings multiples and for lower amounts. Investors are less willing to have their dollars fuel brands that burn cash inefficiently.

So how can entrepreneurs strengthen their businesses and, coincidentally, strengthen their hands for when it’s time to seek more funding? Sharelle Klaus, who has run Dry Soda for nearly two decades, will discuss a method as she leads BevNET Live audiences in a relentless pursuit of gross profit through cost control and smart spending. Klaus recently took a microscope to assess her costs and determined the path forward for Dry that involves maximizing gross margin on a unit basis – one that required her to change her team’s philosophy, change the way it addresses its product portfolio, but also to put it on the path to profitability and efficiency. During her talk at BevNET Live, she will distill years of wisdom gained from running Dry from fast-growing, capital-efficient approaches, and provide the keys to maintaining gross margin goals that can sustain a business in all kinds of investment environments, putting control in the hands of the founder.

Take advantage of early bird rates until Friday, October 21. Register by Friday to save $100 per person. Insiders save an additional $100.

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About BevNET Live

BevNET Live is the premier event for beverage brands, distributors, service providers, retailers and investors to discuss what’s next for the industry. With top industry speakers and our New Beverage Showdown, BevNET Live attracts hundreds of brands to each event.

About Sharelle Klaus

As the visionary behind DRY, Sharelle Klaus has always had a passion for the culinary world and for celebrating every part of a meal, including the drinks. After having four children and not being able to enjoy wine or cocktails with his meals, Klaus recognized the need for a refreshing, high and alcohol-free option on the market that was worth pairing with a good meal. . In 2005, Klaus made the first batches of DRY Soda in his kitchen and officially launched DRY. For the past 17 years, Klaus has made it his mission to establish a culture of social drinking for everyone.

Klaus brings nearly three decades of entrepreneurial, financial and technology experience to his role as CEO of DRY. As an advocate for advancing the curious sober movement, she also spearheaded DRY’s investment in Austin’s sober bar, Sans Bar, and co-authored a “Cocktail Guide to ‘zero test’ in November 2020.

Prior to founding DRY, Klaus worked as a consultant for Infrastructure Management Group and Price Waterhouse. She also served as president of the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs, where she led the strategic development of programs, events, and fundraisers for the organization’s more than 250 members in the Seattle area. Klaus has been featured in numerous publications including Huffpost, Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Bon Appetit and Imbibe, and has spoken at various beverage industry events including BevNET Live and Lo and No Beverage Summit. She was also honored by Seattle Business Magazine as one of its 2018 CEOs of the Year. Sharelle is a mother of four and currently lives and works down the road in a converted SUV motorhome.


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