PE-backed Tierra Nueva Fine Cocoa appoints CEO

Miami-based Tierra Nueva Fine Cocoa LLC, a chocolate and coffee technology company, has named David Burke as CEO. Previously, Burke was executive vice president of Red Diamond Coffee & Tea. Tierra Nueva is backed by ProspEquity Partners.


MIAMI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Tierra Nueva Fine Cocoa, LLC, a Miami-based coffee technology and manufacturing company, announces David Burke as its new CEO. Burke has been a leader in the food and beverage industry for more than 30 years, with successes at Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Primo Water, and most recently as the executive vice president of Birmingham, Ala.-based Red Diamond Coffee & Tea.
Burke led a comprehensive turnaround at Red Diamond Coffee & Tea. He also helped accelerate startup Primo Water through a significant IPO as its president and COO, and served as the functioning head of marketing, consumer insights, North American sales and customer capability for The Pepsi Bottling Group. Earlier in his career, Burke held responsibilities in various leadership positions inside Coca-Cola’s operations, sales and general management divisions, including at both Coca-Cola USA and its North American bottling system.

He received an honors bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of North Carolina. He is also a board member and past president of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s North Carolina chapter.

“As we chart our course toward Tierra Nueva’s global leadership in the coffee revolution, we believe David Burke is the right man at the helm,” said Christopher Ramonetti, managing partner and CEO of Tampa, Fla.-based ProspEquity Partners (PEP), an emerging private equity firm which has purchased a majority stake in Tierra Nueva. “His capabilities, experience, connections and relationships in the food and beverage industries are of significant value in our strategic planning, while the management acumen and competitive prowess he applies to all his business initiatives ensure we will meet all objectives in an accelerated fashion.”

“I welcome the challenges and opportunities I have identified in the near and long-terms for Tierra Nueva, and look forward to executing on our strategic plan,” Burke said. “Tierra Nueva’s evolutionary coffee processes and new product categories will capture the attention of the global coffee industry as we become the recognized leader in breakthrough coffee technologies and brand new product categories.”

Tierra Nueva has successfully expanded into whole bean coffee processing that has resulted in a variety of exciting products using 100 percent of the coffee bean. Whereby most companies try to squeeze more out of each bean to maximize output, Tierra Nueva redeveloped the process and can use the whole bean – no waste. This process enables a proprietary 12-month shelf-stable coffee concentrate that can be used as a branded ingredient for a variety of large-scale applications, including frozen desserts, bakery, confectionery and ready-to-drink products.

The company has the potential to immediately disrupt the growing $74-billion global coffee market with its proven and scaled manufacturing and distribution process.

Tierra Nueva has product tested, piloted and nationally launched various formats for branded and privately labeled Coffee Thins™, Coffee Spreads and coffee ingredient products. It employs more than 80 at its 42,000-square-foot SQF3, kosher and Halal-certified facility in Miami. The coffee company was founded in 2009 as a chocolate manufacturing, packaging and distribution company in the U.S.

Tierra Nueva pivoted to coffee in 2012 and partnered with PEP to launch a coffee revolution that will rapidly scale Tierra Nueva’s worldwide market penetration.

“These are not just products,” Ramonetti said. “Tierra Nueva has created a coffee experience. No other company in the world has created an edible coffee product category like this, especially one that is environmentally responsible and has true global potential.”

Tierra Nueva and PEP will be at the Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago, May 22-24.

“It is an exciting time for Tierra Nueva, PEP and the opportunity to reach a new level, especially with the upcoming launch of a licensed coffee product with one of the largest coffee company brands in the world,” Ramonetti said. “The announcement we plan will send the message loud and clear that Tierra Nueva will be a key player in the coffee industry for decades ahead.”

PEP works intimately with family offices and other independent sponsor limited partners to identify and invest in growth equity in direct investment opportunities, generally between $3 million and $30 million. PEP utilizes its ecosystem of expertise and access to aggressively scale proven product or service offerings toward a major exit through initial public offering or strategic acquisition.
PEP’s three-tiered business philosophy includes:

Investing and inspiring people because people are the transformative competitive advantage and key to innovation, productivity, growth and profitability.

Infusing not just capital and expertise, but proven methodologies and processes that enhance the culture and entrepreneurial spirit of portfolio companies.

Sincerely believing that prosperity means superior and lasting economic and social value for all stakeholders, including investors, employees, customers and the community.

For further information regarding current investment opportunities, please contact PEP at, and for more information on Tierra Nueva, please visit