Black Rifle Coffee CEO Evan Hafer: Going public to fulfill mission of helping thousands of veterans land jobs

Hafer says the deal will help 'seize the opportunity to grow the company'

Black Rifle Coffee founder and CEO Evan Hafer said on Tuesday that his company will be going public via SPAC to help it maintain its commitment to hire 10,000 veterans

"This is just part of completing our promise to the American public and that’s our commitment," Hafer, an Army veteran, said during an exclusive interview with "Mornings with Maria" on Tuesday. 

"We are a true, authentic American brand," he stressed. 

Hafer, also noted that going public will help him "seize the opportunity to grow the company." 

He made the comments on the day it was announced the coffee seller with a focus on military veterans will go public through a merger with a blank-check acquisition firm SilverBox Engaged Merger Corp in a deal that values the combined company at about $1.7 billion, Reuters reported

The total capital available to Black Rifle Coffee at the close of the deal, which is expected to close during the first quarter of next year, will be up to $545 million, the companies reportedly said.

Hafer told host Maria Bartiromo that the company specifically wanted to merge with SilverBox Engaged Merger Corp because the coffee company wanted "to curate a relationship with somebody that had the same mission, intent and the commitment to the veteran community."


"They’ve been able to come to the table and commit shares as part of the deal to the Black Rifle Coffee Fund, which is our nonprofit section of the business," he continued. 

As part of the transaction, the Utah-based coffee company, which was created in 2014, plans to reorganize as a public benefit corporation, according to Reuters, which reported that while the company will remain a for-profit enterprise, it will continue to help the community. 

Black Rifle Coffee and SilverBox are reportedly expected to donate more than 530,000 shares, valued at about $5.3 million, to the company’s charitable foundation.

"We set up with some very intentional mission-focused goals," Hafer told Bartiromo. "One of my goals is to field 1,000 plus ATV wheelchairs for service members that have been physically disabled." 

Black Rifle Coffee, along with other coffee companies, reported online growth last year

"In 2020, our revenue nearly doubled to $163 million. 70% of that was from e-commerce," Black Rifle Coffee Company told FOX Business in August

The coffee company said its consumer business, which includes both subscription and non-subscription sales, saw a 92% increase last year to $126 million, according to Reuters, which added that the company also generates sales through wholesale retail from grocery chains, including Walmart and Sam’s Club. 

On Tuesday, Hafer stressed that veterans are valuable members of the workforce, noting that "they bring a complex problem solving and split decision-making matrix that I think most of the civilian population might not understand."


"They’ve been put in some of the most dynamic, complex and dangerous problems in the world," he continued. "They’ve been able to solve those at a very high level." 

Hafer then stressed that veterans "have a lot to offer" the American professional workplace. 

He pointed out that one of his missions is "to lead the rest of corporate America to say, ‘We can do a better job of hiring veterans. We can do a better job of putting a spotlight on veteran unemployment. We can do a better job of taking care of the people that continue to serve and sacrifice overseas to include not only the veterans, but the veteran families.’" 

"So this is a really important step for me to be able to go out and use the podium or the platform of Black Rifle Coffee to shed the light on veterans’ issues, hire veterans and create a culture that is truly authentic to the veteran way of life," Hafer said. 


FOX Business Breck Dumas contributed to this report.