entrepreneur

Yanni Hufnagel

Yanni HufnagelYanni Hufnagel is the founder and CEO of Lemon Perfect, a company that makes healthy, delicious lemonades with zero sugar. At age 24, Yanni has built up a team of over 20 employees who are so committed to the company’s success that they’re willing to take on side gigs as baristas or restaurant servers to get paid. The company started in 2006 and acquired its current name in 2008. Yanni Hufnagel’s line of lemonades is now sold in over 1,200 locations across the country and has plans for global expansion in the near future.

  1. Personal Life

Yanni was born in 1972 and raised on Long Island, New York. He went to college at the University of Florida as a finance major and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a marketing emphasis. Yanni began his career as an investment banker, guiding mergers, acquisitions, and private equity funds and launching new ventures for Fortune 500 companies such as Motorola and Sprint Nextel.

  1. Career Highlights

In 2004, Yanni co-founded Lemon Perfect with his friend and fellow New York City native Jason Simmons. At the time, Yanni worked in the financial industry and earned an average of $125,000 per year. Yanni left his job at Morgan Stanley to start Lemon Perfect. The company sold its first beverage in April 2006; at the same time, it also hired its first employee. Lemon Perfect launched a new flavor in 2007- a mix of Triple Sec + Blue Curacao + Sweet Orange Juice – which has been successful enough to be available in every U.S. state.

  1. Business Strategy

Lemon Perfect’s niche market is healthy, organic, and sustainable beverages without artificial ingredients. Yanni has stated that he only wants to sell drinks with a “single ingredient,” The lemon juice used in Lemon Perfect is squeezed fresh on-site at a rate of one gallon per minute. To stay affordable to the average customer, he reduced his company’s profit margins to let customers pay as little as one dollar for a bottle of Lemon Perfect. In addition, Lemon Perfect only uses 20% of the lemon juice that a competitor uses in their lemonade drinks.

Yanni HufnagelYanni Hufnagel’s Lemon Perfect is creating a new image for the lemonade industry by being healthy and sustainable with a low price point. His lifestyle and success can inspire entrepreneurs who want to succeed in today’s economy.