13 Dec 2017 --- Kappa Bioscience AS, maker of K2Vital vitamin K2 MK-7, has appointed Garnet Pigden and New Jersey-based D2C to head-up the continued development of Kappa’s position in the US market. The appointment spans the establishment of strategy, infrastructure, partnerships and key accounts in support of an overall objective of solidifying vitamin K2 in mainstream US markets and channels, according to Kappa.
This expansion of Oslo, Norway-based Kappa represents an advancement in the evolution of vitamin K2 from a niche segment to a staple ingredient alongside its peers in the “essential” vitamins and minerals categories, the company says.
“Garnet and D2C’s role will build upon Kappa R&D innovations such as synthesis, microencapsulation for stability and pro-vitamin forms to further commercialize K2Vital in the US, using comparisons to vitamin D3 as both a model and benchmark for success,” Kappa adds.
Leveraging experience for US expansion
Pigden’s experience in the ingredients and functional foods industries, among others, is emphasized by Kappa. This includes leading multiple supplements companies, a Global SVP position with DSM Nutritional Products and launching his own brand of supplement-enhanced skincare products.
The appointment includes the responsibility for the evaluation and US strategy development for K2Vital. It also means the establishment and management of infrastructure, inclusive of distributor relationships. Garnet will aim to secure the US key accounts and partnerships required to fulfill the objective of moving K2 into mainstream product and consumer categories, along with wide-distribution retail channels.
“We were delighted to secure a relationship with Garnet and D2C as part of our campaign to expand the footprint of K2Vital globally,” says Egil Greve, CEO of Kappa Bioscience. “The US may represent as much as 50 percent of the growth opportunity for vitamin K2, and top-tier US companies provide the best possibilities for leveraging the innovations from Kappa’s extensive science and R&D programs.”
“Through Garnet and D2C we hope to establish the path that will put K2 in every US household, in product formats that serve all consumer types – much like D3 today,” adds Greve.
“It’s rare to identify a ground-floor opportunity like K2,” Garnet Pigden, Principal D2C LLC, comments. “It’s one of only a handful of essential vitamins, [it] provides significant bone and heart health benefits and large segments of the US population are likely deficient.’’
“While all the important commercial innovations to drive mass adoption are in place, there are still significant opportunities for early movers to differentiate and secure market-leading positions,” Pigden continues. “Kappa is best positioned to lead K2 to the next stage, and I look forward to a collaboration that will see K2 reach its potential.’’
Last week, Kappa Bioscience announced the worldwide launch of a free vitamin K2 MK-7 quality testing program. The program is open to finished K2 products, from any source, for testing and verification of the product’s K2 label claim. The program supports wider goals of educating markets about K2 stability and advancing K2 science to resolve the question of why unprotected K2 is unstable in mineral formulations.