Pioneering British tequila start-up raises £500k

L-R: HACIEN Founders Jordan Myers, Seb Francis and business development manager Ashley Mitchell

A Leeds-based drinks start-up, HACIEN, has hit its target to raise £500k investment to help launch its range of premium crafted tequilas.

Created to challenge the nation’s perception of tequila, HACIEN aims to disrupt the spirits market by introducing a range of sipping tequilas to trade and consumers later this year.

After witnessing the boom in popularity that vodka and gin have had in recent years, founders, Seb Francis and Jordan Myers, identified an opportunity to revolutionise tequila.

From there the range of premium tequilas were honed through multiple trips to Mexico visiting hundreds of distilleries to find a partner who would help produce a smoother tasting tequila for the UK market.

Francis said: “We’ve spent the last 18-months carefully crafting and developing HACIEN so we can launch with a range of drinks that turn people’s perception of tequila on its head. Tequila is incredibly popular in the USA where it is usually sipped or mixed into cocktails like gin.

“We wanted to develop a premium tequila using 100% blue agave so it has naturally sweeter flavour. Now we’ve reached our funding target, and have some great investors on board, we’re ready to gear up for the launch of our three products later this year.”

Amongst its investors is Doug Bouton, co-founder of Halo Top ice creams, who has experience in shaking up the ice cream market with the lower-calorie brand. Explaining why he backed the business he said:

“What HACIEN aims to do with its range will change the way we think about and drink tequila. When launching Halo Top, we had an ambition to disrupt and improve a saturated market and that drive is very similar to what HACIEN want to do within the spirits sector. I’m excited to see the brand and its range of flavours launch later this year and be part of the business going from strength to strength.”

The half a million pound investment will now be used cover the day to day running of the business, development of the brand, marketing activity and product development and production.