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Sparkling Ice CEO Kevin Klock Abruptly Departs

Talking Rain Beverage CEO Kevin Klock has left the company.Talking Rain Beverage CEO Kevin Klock has left the company.
Talking Rain Beverage CEO Kevin Klock has left the company.Courtesy of Talking Rain

Kevin Klock, the president and CEO of the privately held beverage company that makes Sparkling Ice, abruptly departed from his leadership posts.

Talking Rain, the company that makes the fast-growing flavored water brand Sparkling Ice, announced today that Klock was departing his post and that his roles would be assumed by CFO Marcus Smith. “Senior leadership is working closely together with Smith to ensure a seamless transition in the continued execution of strategies in place, and to guarantee that customers and distributors will be serviced at the highest level,” the company said in a statement.

The beverage company added that the it would not make executives available to discuss the transition at this time.

Talking Rain is a nearly 30-year-old Washington-based beverage enterprise that sought to take on big beverage companies like PepsiCo (PEP) and Coca Cola (KO) and really began to make inroads several years ago when it focused on the zero-calorie Sparkling Ice beverage brand. Sales growth has soared, exceeding $650 million in sales in 2015, the annual sales stat that the company most recently shared publicly.

Klock also notably gave the brand a big marketing jolt by partnering with NBA star Kevin Durant in 2014. That relationship has continued in subsequent years.

“Klock’s departure is abrupt,” wrote Beverage Digest executive editor Duane Stanford in an e-mail sent out to media and clients. ” He was front and center just three weeks ago as Talking Rain debuted a new $37 million marketing campaign.” Klock was in New York City conducting media interviews as recently as late February with new chief marketing officer Brian Kuz.