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Whitebox gains £350,000 investment

Bartender-founded canned cocktail company Whitebox has secured £350,000 (US$477,370) to fund a production site in Edinburgh.

The Whitebox range features a Freezer Martini and a Whisky Soda

Whitebox is a ready-to-drink (RTD) cocktail brand created by a team of bartenders that includes Alex Lawrence, global director of bars for Mr Lyan Group; Pietro Collina, bar director for the Nomad Hotel in London; and Ben Iravani, owner of Aberdeen-based bar Orchid.

“Wherever you are, take a look in your nearest store, you’ll see formulaic brands doing cocktails by numbers,” Iravani said.

“We are doing the opposite. Each cocktail is unique and excellent, and the passion we have for making excellent drinks comes through in every detail. With Whitebox we’re not going to take the traditional approach of branded line extensions.”

The business’ first product, the Pocket Negroni, has sold more than 60,000 cans in the UK. In September, Whitebox debuted a larger range of RTDs, including a Martini and an Old Fashioned.

“We basically just dipped our toes in the water with the initial Negroni can product and were pretty surprised at how well it went,” explained Lawrence. “We quickly realised that with some of the world’s best bartenders in our team, along with in-house production and design capabilities we could do something pretty unique on a much bigger scale.”

The brand has now completed a pre-seed funding deal with the help of UK accounting firm Johnston Carmichael. The money will be used to support a facility in Sighthill, Edinburgh, where the RTDs are mixed, blended and canned.

Stewart Pennington, deputy head of food and drink at Johnston Carmichael, said: “Consumer behaviours have undoubtedly been influenced by lockdown and this exciting new venture for Ben and the Whitebox team is a standout offering in the current market, so it was no surprise that investors were eager to back the project.

“We have worked with Ben and the Whitebox team on this project since its inception, acting as a trusted advisor by providing sectoral expertise and know-how. It’s been a privilege to support their unique journey and to bring Whitebox to the market.”

Over the coming months, the RTD company plans to grow both its product range and its team, which currently features seven London-based and three Edinburgh-based employees.

Whitebox’s range is available at select independent retailers and online at

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