Allow us to introduce…

November 13, 2018 / no comments

We are dedicated to helping create a thriving world. We believe business is the key to getting there. Business has helped us make the social, environmental, and economic messes we’re in today – and it can be instrumental to getting us out.

“It’s just business” has been struck from our vocabulary. We’re calling each and every business into its responsibility to be a good citizen. And, we believe with our full hearts that this is possible without compromising profit. To think otherwise is just a failure of imagination.

Guru has built a reputation as an innovative creative agency. But as we approach a new year, we are excited to re-introduce you to our intent and services. After working at the nexus of business and impact, we’ve recognized a need and in 2019 are launching the world’s first cloud-based impact management system to more effectively and efficiently help brands to define, implement and expand their impact.

We call it MAHA.

MAHA multiplies and amplifies an organization’s impact efforts through:
  • Impact Strategy Documentation
  • Individual and Team e-Training and Certification
  • Values-Aligned Advocate and Influencer Connector
  • Impact Campaign Generator

Our focus at Guru has always been to stoke the fires of a passionately purposeful brand at the center of a business. We help organizations identify, crystalize and fan the flames of this beating heart at the center of their efforts.

We then use this purposeful brand as an organizing idea for managing an organization’s rippling impact through its spheres of influence. This is the purpose of our creative work, but we take it much further – to every decision an organization makes and every point of contact with customers and stakeholders.

MAHA’s mission is to empower and connect values-aligned brands, influencers and individuals to take action on the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals in service of amplified global impact – a natural extension of Guru’s vision to increase joy and reduce suffering in the world.

Together, Guru and MAHA believe in the power of business to create a thriving future on this planet. And we’re counting on purposeful brands to do the heavy lifting. But it’s going to take all of us. The large and the small. The established and the start-up.

As we look toward 2019, our products and services are scaled for both ends of the spectrum: from full-service purpose branding and acceleration services for those needing custom attention, to e-learning and campaign generator resources for those just starting out.

We’d like to tell you more.

Please reach out to us to meet the new collaborators in our mix and hear about how Guru, together with MAHA, is ready to help you and your business level up as a purposeful brand in 2019.

We Are Proud to Launch REBBL’s “What’s Your Elixir?” Campaign

September 12, 2018 / no comments

Guru and REBBL, creator of organic, super herb-powered coconut-milk elixirs, have launched “What’s Your Elixir?,” a new integrated marketing campaign that connects consumers to the transformational power of super herbs and adaptogens.

As the brand continues to thoughtfully expand into targeted conventional retail stores across the country, “What’s Your Elixir?” aims to reach a wider audience, allow REBBL to get to know their REBBL community on a deeper level, and help consumers understand the power of super herbs and their benefits for the body.  

“What’s Your Elixir?” exemplifies the edgy, deep, and powerfully transformative position the brand holds in the marketplace and leverages a laddered messaging approach, featuring the key brand strengths: taste, natural ingredient functionality, and deeply-rooted social impact. The first wave of the campaign focuses on the exquisite taste of each of the 14 unique offerings, focusing on the arresting design of the bottle packaging, playing up the bright pops of vibrant color and language with statements such as “As good for you as it looks” to entice the viewer to learn more.

The second wave of the campaign will introduce consumers to the truly functional benefits of REBBL’s family of elixirs, driving awareness to the ancient wisdom of the Plant Queendom through super herbs and adaptogens like turmeric, schizandra, and reishi, all staple ingredients in the REBBL lineup.  

As the campaign progresses, the messaging will begin to educate consumers about the larger impact story at REBBL’s core, particularly its dedication to impact sourcing and the 2.5% of net sales that is donated to Not for Sale – the non-profit that co-founded REBBL – for every bottle sold.  Together, REBBL and Not for Sale are working to co-create a future without human trafficking and building a regenerative business and new model for innovative social enterprise.

By connecting taste with function, and ultimately conveying the brand’s greater purpose, REBBL demonstrates the breadth of functionality of its product line and the impact it is having through an array of different channels. The “What’s Your Elixir?” campaign coincides with the launch of REBBLs enhanced website, and will feature digital advertising, social media, a fun and playful video series that engages consumers, integrates influencers, and drives user-generated content, connecting them directly with the larger REBBL Community.  Touting the traditional uses and benefits of the many super herbs featured in REBBL products, the campaign asks customers to share and celebrate the elixir that powers their lives. 

“We are really excited to launch such a fully-immersive campaign and look forward to learning more about how consumers use our elixirs in their own lives, as they discover the ability to tend to their own health while helping create positive social and environmental impact in such an authentic way,” says Rusti Porter, Senior VP of Marketing at REBBL. “Super herbs and adaptogens are still new to most people, and we love the way this campaign helps introduce them to the mainstream through the exquisite taste and intrigue of REBBL products, and once we have their attention- brings them deeper into the holistic story of how we source the truly efficacious power of plants to vitalize our bodies, our communities and our planet.

In addition to popular grocery stores like Whole Foods and other diverse health food retailers nationwide, REBBL has recently launched in west coast Target locations and Safeway stores, continually expanding its distribution. Coming on the heels of its $20 million fundraise in spring 2018, and with an anticipated 8,000 plus retail outlets by the end of this year, REBBL’s growth is powering its ability to help build self-sustaining, resilient communities around the world.  

Follow along with the campaign using #MyElixir on Instagram and Facebook or visit http://rebbl.co/ for more information.

Just Business Is Not Business As Usual

September 12, 2018 / no comments

Just Business, an investment company with headquarters in San Francisco, announced today that it has closed the seed round of its new Innovate For Good Fund. The $1.6m seed round is intended to accelerate the growth of early-stage enterprises that fit the mission of the fund to generate tangible impact while delivering a solid financial return for its investors.

Just Business is the independent investment arm of the international non-profit, Not For Sale. The investment firm is widely known for its incubation of REBBL, one of the most successful functional beverages in the USA market and a Guru client.

The Just Business “Origin Fund” also incubated Dignitá, a very successful restaurant enterprise headquartered in Amsterdam, and served as the sole investor to grow Square Organics.

David Batstone. Photo by Louise Andersen

“We are dedicated to bring more dignity to people and planet,” says David Batstone, the managing partner and co-founder of Just Business, “and the best way to do that is to embed that mission into the core of business enterprises that we believe can scale.”

The Innovate For Good Fund has identified three investment opportunities in which it plans to invest:

  • Z Shoes Organic will receive growth capital from the Innovate For Good Fund. This fashion shoe enterprise is designed around the concept of “impact sourcing,” deeply embedded in the supply chain work of the international non-profit Not For Sale to source latex and cotton from native communities from the Amazon of Peru. Not For Sale owns 5% of Z Shoes, and the company gives 2.5% of every sale to fuel Not For Sale’s work around the world.
  • Another recipient of growth capital from the Innovate For Good Fund will be Relocity, which deploys a very innovative technology and business model to reinvent corporate relocation.  Successful companies today are racing to secure the best talent, wherever those individuals might live.  Relocation services have not kept pace with needs of the mobility market. Relocity offers an on-demand concierge to meet the needs of an individual in relocation.  For every hour of billing, Relocity donates 1% to the work of Not For Sale to fulfill its mission in the community where that worker will be relocating.
  • Square Organics, a plant-based, organic snack company, is another impact company in which Innovate For Good plans to invest. The capital investment will enable the enterprise to extend its direct-to-consumer outreach to an engaged millenial audience and augment its visibility through retail channels.  Square Organics is committed to “impact sourcing” and dedicates 1% of each sale to Not For Sale.

The Innovate For Good Fund is advised by an investment committee comprised of five members, all of whom are personal investors in the fund: Batstone; Jostein Solheim, former CEO of Ben & Jerry’s and now in senior leadership at Unilever, Head of the Foods & Refreshment Division for North America; Ray Lin, a senior partner at Latham & Watkins law firm; John Clair, a former director of supply chain and operations at Miller Brewing Company; and Mark Wexler, also co-founder of Just Business.

“I want to be participate in funds that have an economic mission to deliver a sustainable return to its shareholders, while at the same time being a force for good that will change the world,” says Solheim.  

The Innovate For Good Fund touts many other highly influential impact investors, including “Gagan” (Jared) Levy, the chair of the Social Venture Network/Investor Circle and founder of the impact branding agency Guru.

Given the growth trajectory of its portfolio, Just Business anticipates raising more capital for the Innovate For Good Fund in mid-2019.

“We see so much opportunity to scale change,” explains Wexler, who also serves as CEO of Not For Sale. “Great business models help us extend the benefits of capital, technology and talent to those people in the world who previously have been left out.”

Join Californians at the Cutting Edge

May 21, 2018 / no comments

We are proud to work with California Vision 2020, an exciting conference for California change leaders happening again this fall. After an inspiring first year, the conference will convene again on September 20-22, 2018 at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Sacramento. Guru’s Founder and CEO Gagan (Jared) Levy serves on the Advisory Committee for this conference, and he would be psyched to see you in person at this remarkable event. Save the date, and mark your calendars now.

We believe this conference is at the heart of how we create a larger shift in the world, bringing together luminaries and leaders at the leading edge of the new paradigm of culture. The California Vision 2020 Conference began in 2017 with the recognition that California – known for its trailblazers and experimenters – can lead the way for the country toward a world that is built on love, justice, and opportunity for all by advancing truly game-changing solutions.  It’s the ideal place to serve as a laboratory for a better future!

The 2018 conference will convene solutionaries, activists, entrepreneurs, thinkers, political leaders, and change agents who are championing new social innovations and offering visionary roadmaps to address areas from poverty to energy to education and much more.  It will also focus on bridging divides and helping us all-with our wide diversity of perspectives-to work together effectively on issues we all care about.  And we will have opportunities during the conference for “safe space” conversations, movement-building roundtables and skill-building practice sessions.  We will also bring interfaith and spiritual leaders together with great music to create a truly incredible event.

You can sign up for the conference here through May 25 at the Super-Early Bird rate (and of course, ongoing until tickets sell out!).

Launching “Mystery Mondays” at Harmonia with the Teachings of Ram Dass

February 19, 2018 / no comments

… with the teachings of Ram Dass shared by Guru Founder and CEO Jared “Gagan” Levy

Guru has embarked on a new journey to co-launch an incredibly inspiring work and play collective on the water in Sausalito, California. The storied halls that once hosted the most iconic musicians and echoed some of the most famous tunes of our times as The Record Plant are now home to Harmonia, a health and well-being social club and shared workspace for Guru.

Harmonia is a growing hub of creativity, and the Guru staff based within the shared space can pause to take a yoga class alongside other Harmonia members, reset a chaotic day with 20 minutes in the infrared sauna, or choose to work in the garden studio for fresh air and natural inspiration.

To bring the collaborative creativity back into the harmonic halls of this historic building, and start to manifest community through new engaging programming that welcomes members to share their passions and inspire the whole of the collective, Harmonia and Guru have launched a new series called, “Mystery Mondays.”

To launch the first edition of Mystery Mondays, Guru’s Founder and CEO Jared “Gagan” Levy offered to share the impactful teachings of his teacher, the incredible thought leader that wrote, “Be Here Now,” Ram Dass. Gagan focused primarily on Ram Dass’ teachings circle around the following concept: “Love Everyone. Serve Everyone. Remember God.”

As the love and “teachings” of Neem Karoli Baba (Maharaji) continue to pour out of the Love Serve Remember Foundation, Ram Dass is reaching more people than ever. To ensure authentic “torch passing” of this legacy, and to facilitate the continuation of the teachings to future generations, it is important to share these learnings with inspired communities like Harmonia.

A great group of folks assembled to listen to Gagan share his knowledge and passion, which sparked an ensuing discussion around compassion, service, presence, and even how to look at difficult times as “grist for the mill.” The evening began with a short story about Ram Dass’ crazy phases of life from head of psych at Harvard, to psychedelics, to the teacher in the robe who truly imported eastern philosophy to the west. After a powerful Metta meditation to a short clip of Ram Dass’ captivating lecture at Naropa around how to move from “roles to souls,” the group closed out with a beautiful talk over tea.

You can learn more and get access to the teachings of Ram Dass and other thought leaders at RamDass.org, download the mobile application from the foundation called “HeartMind” or check out the podcast network at BeHereNowNetwork.com.