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Meet Max Berg of Eliqs in Santa Monica

Today we’d like to introduce you to Max Berg.

Max, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Eliqs was born out of a business school project at UCLA Anderson. The company was initially conceived to be a “build a beer factory”, whereby customers would work to create their own beer recipes and design their own label design with our help. Without any brewing experience across the team, this was a tall task.

After an initial proof-of-concept where we created a “custom” brand of beer for a family friend’s Thanksgiving dinner by scrubbing off the labels of (terrible) store-bought beer in a bathtub, replacing them with mediocre stickers designed by yours truly, and seeing the overwhelmingly positive response from the family (Grandpa was literally hiding the beers so he could keep them as a memento), we quickly realized that people value the design of the beverages they are drinking from equally, if not more, than the liquid they are consuming.

This experience, combined with shifting consumer preferences toward personalized products, served as a turning point and helped us refocus our efforts on building a business around high-quality design that enables the creation of personalized, custom-branded beverages for any occasion.

We’ve come a long way since that 1st Thanksgiving dinner, and have since serviced events across the entire spectrum – from 1-year-old birthdays to working with professional sports teams to product launches for top Fortune 500 companies and everything in between.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It definitely hasn’t always been smooth sailing, which is natural and expected for any startup. Simply getting up and running in the highly regulated alcohol/beer space was a challenge. Finding the right legal team who truly understood the business model we wanted to build was a challenge. Defining the operational structure that enables us to remain legally compliant was a challenge. Leasing a warehouse space without three years of tax records just so we could produce our product was a challenge. And developing partnerships with local craft beverage producers with just an idea and zero existing customers to speak of was a challenge.

Getting over each of these hurdles only helped to strengthen our team, educate us about the space we were operating in, and refine and optimize our business plan. They said it would be hard, and they were right.

Please tell us about Eliqs.
Eliqs is building a next-generation beverage company that replaces “generic” drinks with personalized, custom-branded canned beverages for corporate events & social occasions, as well as for resale with hospitality, brand, and influencer partners.

The process for working with us is super easy and consists of 2 design approaches. Either partner directly with Eliqs’s professional in-house design team to create a custom label design from scratch or select one of our pre-existing Templates to personalize. Once the design has been finalized, simply select your beverage of choice from our curated list of options produced by our local craft partners. For there, you can sit back and relax as we produce your order and deliver it directly to you within two weeks, cold and ready to drink. It’s that easy.

Our prices are comparable to the same craft beverages if you were to purchase them from the store, we only require a 24 can minimum, and can turn custom order around within two weeks. We’re the only company in the market today offering this combination of flexibility + quality design + beverage optionality.

Arguably the best part about our process is that it’s beverage agnostic – meaning that we are able to deliver this same custom-branded experience across any beverage served in a can. Although right now we currently offer craft beer and wine, we are planning to roll out a hard seltzer (lime!) at the end of March, as well as non-alcoholic options like flat water and flavored seltzer water soon after. The possibilities are endless and we’re just getting started!

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
Doing a kickflip for the first time. It was one of those things that seemed impossible before it happened, and then something “clicked” and the fear of falling or getting hurt somehow wasn’t as strong. The euphoria of committing and landing it for the first time is hard to explain, but it drove me to want to be a professional skateboarder for a majority of my childhood… untilllll I broke 5-6 bones and realized that maybe it wasn’t the best fit.


  • Craft beer prices start at $2.69 / can (24 can minimum)

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