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Author: The BCW

WIN Participant’s Products Now on Local Shelves

VAE’s caffeinated energy spray is now available at 20 local Chestnut Market locations as part of a product test organized by the Business Council of Westchester’s Westchester Innovation Network program (BCW WIN).

WIN matched the Canada-based VAE with Chestnut Market, a regional convenience store chain in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. Part of BCW WIN’s mission is to help innovators acquire feedback in order to refine and improve their market concepts.

“We are focused on attracting innovators to collaborate with our members—local companies of all sizes. Our goal is to persuade innovators to grow and stay here in Westchester,” said Dr. Marsha Gordon, BCW president and CEO.

VAE sells a breath spray enriched with caffeine and amino acids that delivers 20 mg of caffeine per spray. The energy spray’s target customers are young urban professionals, fitness enthusiasts, college students, or anyone needing energy on the go.

Faheem Jamal, director of C-store operations at Chestnut Market said that his company sells many caffeinated products, and the retailer keeps ahead of the competition by being the first to market with new products.

One VAE has 36 sprays, which is the equivalent of 12 coffees, and sells for $14.99 at Three sprays provide the same amount of caffeine as a 5 oz cup of coffee.

VAE launched in 2021 with online sales and two flavors, mint and mango. For the retail launch with Chestnut Market, VAE added a new flavor: mocha.

Mohand Khouider, co-founder of VAE, said he has received valuable feedback from consumers about the brand. Initial consumer comments from in-store sampling include portability, speedy effect, and appealing taste. Khouider said that consumers have expressed satisfaction with the convenience of not having to drink coffee to enjoy a caffeine boost.

“We’ve also noted the desire for a wider range of flavors, and so we are currently working on expanding our lineup,” said Khouider.

VAE’s goal with the Chestnut Market collaboration is to complete a small test launch before doing a larger New York City launch. The Chestnut Market-VAE Energy collaboration was one of more than a dozen innovator matches facilitated by BCW WIN in 2023.

Can Your Business Benefit from BCW WIN?

The Business Council of Westchester is committed to helping entrepreneurs bring their ideas to life through the support of its diverse business ecosystem in Westchester County through its BCW WIN initiative. Its network is composed of small and mid-sized companies, professional services firms, and non-profits along with some of the most well-known brands in the world like IBM, Pepsico, MasterCard, Heineken, Danone, Morgan Stanley, and Regeneron. It also includes some of the largest hospitals and healthcare systems in the world and many colleges and universities.

To learn more about becoming an Innovation Partner or joining the BCW WIN program, visit

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