How Russell Simmons' Refrigerator Led To A $15 Million Investment In Celsius Energy Drink

Russell Simmons
Russell Simmons

Over the years, Russell Simmons has established himself as one of the best businessmen Hip-Hop culture has ever produced.

Throughout his four-decade career, Russell Simmons has had success investing in music, film, television, fashion, video games, the Internet, and financial services. Now, Simmons hopes to transform the energy drink industry with a strategic investment in a product called Celsius.
Simmons, who is a practicing Yogi and vegan, was introduced to Celsius through a friend. He was impressed with the results of the energy drink, which is the world’s first and only negative calorie and fat burning beverage.

Russell Simmons’ new energy drink Celsius

According to a press release, Celsius helps burn up to 93% more body fat in addition to being a source of “clean energy” for the body. The drink is sugar-free, contains no high-fructose corn syrup, no preservatives, no artificial flavors or colors and is low in sodium.
The most significant test marketing for Russell Simmons came from the refrigerator in his house. After bringing a case of Celsius home, the mogul noticed how many of his guests tried the drink and their delight with the results.
“One day, I ordered a case from And then everyone would come to my house, and they would always take up all of my drinks,” Russell Simmons explained. “I was like ‘leave my drink there, go find yourself a Red Bull or something.'”

Flo Fusion
Flo Rida’s new Flo Fit line with Celsius

The activity in his kitchen led to Simmons reaching out to his friend Mr. Li Ka-Shing, who owns Hong Kong-based Horizon Ventures. Horizon, Russell Simmons, and his business partner Kimora Lee Simmons invested a total of $15.95 million into Celsius.
“Energy has always been a key force in both my life and career and I’m excited about the potential this brand has to help people push themselves further towards their goals, be they related to fitness, family or fun,” Kimora Lee said of her involvement in the company. “I also look forward to this unique opportunity to directly impact Celsius’ creative direction moving forward.”
Celsius is already utilizing Hip-Hop to market its product. In March of 2014, the company signed a global endorsement deal with rapper Flo Rida, who is producing a line of branded “functional beverages.”
Russell and Kimora Lee are strategic growth partners. Their role will be to help broaden the reach of Celsius in the United States and around the world.