Hockey brothers use energy drink empire to give Cleveland kids a chance to play

The motto found on the packaging of NOOMA’s products, “Sweat + Do Good,” is now the mission statement fueling a campaign to get kids moving.

3 min
April 11, 2024

Jarred and Brandon Smith grew up playing hockey together. The brothers played in high school, college and, for a short time, the pros. But, most likely, if you know their name, it’s because of their wildly successful functional drink line: NOOMA. As a certified B-Corp, giving back is engrained in the company’s DNA, spearheaded by the brothers. And now, the company has turned their motto “Sweat + Do Good” into an initiative fueling not-for-profits in Cleveland.

NOOMA’s Sweat + Do Good initiative supports organizations that provide active, healthy lifestyle opportunities for those with limited access. For the Smith brothers, that means helping underserved and underprivileged youth in Cleveland to get access to sports and fitness programs like the ones that helped them.


NOOMA has experienced year-over-year growth in their Amazon store for the last 9 years

“There’s so much that my brother and I can do in our local community,” said Jarred Smith. “Sweat + Do Good is not just a catchphrase,” he said, “it’s a pillar of the company and how we operate in Cleveland.”

Since launching their initiative, NOOMA has partnered with local Cleveland charities, like Zenworks Yoga, Meraki Slack, Kids that Tri, The OUT Foundation and Adaptive Sports Ohio, that are committed to giving Ohio youth and adults with physical disabilities the chance to play sports. NOOMA has donated proceeds of new product launches to Adaptive Sports Ohio and the brothers are headliners in the charity’s annual celebrity sled hockey competition.

“What NOOMA provides is beyond just a donation, it’s a true partnership” said Lisa Followay, Director of Adaptive Sports Ohio. “The brothers come and participate in our events, experiencing adaptive sports and using their platform to continue to spread awareness about adaptive sports. It sets them apart.”


The Smith brothers still find time to keep their hockey skills sharp

The brothers are used to standing out. In the world of energy drinks, NOOMA, aka “No More Artificials,” is one of a kind. The all-organic, plant-based line of energy and sports drinks, sodas and electrolyte mixes uses zero added sugars and no artificial ingredients. The brothers developed the concept for their drink line based on their own experience as athletes. While in college, Jarred and Brandon always had energy and sports drinks at the ready. The problem was just about all of them contained added sugar and artificial ingredients—so much so, that they would put Jarred on the bench with acid reflux.

Brandon did the calculations: drinking four sports drinks a day, with each containing an average of 50 grams of sugar, was like drinking one cup of added sugar between workouts. “We have tons of health issues in our family, including diabetes and high blood pressure. I knew that wasn’t going to be something that was going to be sustainable for either of us,” said Brandon Smith. Inspired by their own experiences, they started NOOMA in 2013.

By 2015, the brothers had an omnichannel sales strategy, including selling in the Amazon store. NOOMA customers will find their products in the gym, grocery stores or hear about it on social media, and then go to Amazon to complete their purchase, often signing up for Subscribe and Save. “They’re going to buy it where they want to buy it and what’s convenient to them. And, for millions of Americans, Amazon is convenient to them,” said Jarred Smith. “It’s allowed us to be accessible even if we don’t have a nationwide footprint. We’re there and available to any customer in America.”


NOOMA customers will find their products in the gym, grocery stores or in the Amazon store

The brothers call Subscribe and Save a cornerstone for their business, accounting for 40% of all their Amazon store revenues. The brothers use Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) and, knowing the demand is there, have even reformulated some of their products to make them easier to ship and more profitable for the business.

NOOMA has experienced year-over-year growth with Amazon for the last nine years. Jarred Smith said there’s a level of demand that NOOMA would not have been able to capture without their Amazon store. The brothers have their sights set high for NOOMA. Their goal is to be the number-one organic sports drink in America. Because the company operates as a B-Corp, balancing profit with purpose, the brothers’ goal is twofold for Cleveland.

“The more we’re able to grow our business, the more we’re able to give back to our community,” said Brandon Smith. “Whether it’s showing up at events and charity 5Ks, donating drinks, donating time, donating money, sponsorship, that’s what we like to do—and we’re super-focused on consistently being involved in the local community.”

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Force for Good