Head Joneser Embarks On New Jones-Like Journeys

Melissa Allison and Amy Martinez, business reporters for Seattle Times, are reporting that founder and former chief executive of Jones Soda, Peter van Stolk, has left the building.

Van Stolk also negotiated a $100,000 reduction in severance pay in exchange for the freedom to talk freely about the company and compete against it if he wants to. His reduced severance is $350,000.
He wasn’t specific about differences with the board, but said that it became bogged down in politics and competing agendas.
The company took a severe stumble a couple of years ago during the national rollout of canned soda, posting a 98 percent profit drop in mid-2007. It has yet to recover.

With his noncompete agreement gone, van Stolk’s consulting firm, Treefort Group, can advise soda and other companies that want to compete with Jones Soda. Van Stolk also started a new company with Jones’ former controller, Frank Uy, and two silent partners. Called Box B, the firm helps launch beverage companies.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.