I didn't know until today that Manoj Bhargava, CEO of Living Essentials LLC, maker of the popular 5-Hour Energy drink, has a background in the plastics industry. The news comes from Plastics News' sister publication Crain's Detroit Business, which has a story on Bhargava's new $100 million venture fund. According to PN's story archives, Bhargava was formerly the majority owner of Prime PVC Inc., a Marion, Ind., compounder that was purchased by investment firm Spell Capital Partners LLC in 2007. Crain's Detroit reporters Daniel Duggan and Dustin Walsh pieced together a story on Bhargava -- a difficult task, since he is not well known and has done few interviews. "In 1998, he started Innovative Ventures LLC after he bought the formula for a drug for hangovers from a New Jersey chemist," they wrote. "The product was later named Chaser and was the start of Bhargava's success. He created Living Essentials as a new arm to market Chaser." In December he spoke at a Beverage Digest conference, where he said the company had exceeded $1 billion in sales since it was introduced in 2004, $500 million of which from 2009. Bhargava's investment venture is already giving him a higher profile in Michigan business circles. The co-founder of the initiative is Tom LaSorda, former CEO of Chrysler Group LLC.
Who's the former plastics exec behind '5-Hour Energy'?
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