LaCroix seltzer maker questioned by SEC over sales metrics

Federal regulators recently scrutinized the company behind the popular LaCroix flavored seltzer brand, asking officials  last January to provide more details on metrics the company has used to tout its success, according to a report Wednesday.

The Securities and Exchange Commission asked National Beverage Corp. to explain the full meaning and methodology behind two sales metrics – velocity per outlet and velocity per capita – that the company claimed had “amazed” retailers and driven “growth never before thought possible.” Regulators specifically referenced the company’s mention of the metrics in press releases dated May 4 and May 5, 2017, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The SEC said the LaCroix maker should provide “a discussion of these measures along with comparative amounts or explain why you do not believe this disclosure is necessary,” according to filings obtained by the Journal.

National Beverage Corp. controller Gregory Cook reportedly denied the SEC’s request, arguing the metrics were “as secretive as the formulas of our beverages.” The SEC purportedly concluded its review into the matter last May, the newspaper said.

National Beverage Corp. shares fell more than 10% in trading Wednesday on the news.

The company did not immediately respond to FOX Business’s request for comment on the matter.

LaCroix is the most popular seltzer brand in the U.S., owning 19% of all sales in the sparking water category in the four weeks prior to June 3, according to Susquehanna Financial Group data. Brand sales rose from $65 million in 2010 to $226 million in 2015, according to Euromonitor.