Sports Coach Cracks the Code in the Functional Beverage Space

Sports drinks are a great way to support your body during intense sports training. Loaded with essential nutrients, these drinks are effective in not only hydrating your body but also increasing your stamina. As sports enthusiasts become more aware of the benefits of these drinks, many brands have gotten involved in this space, but not all of them deliver what is required. Fortunately, there is Barcode, a new-age sports drink created by a sports coach to boost your overall well-being. Unlike other carbohydrate-loaded drinks, Barcode is enriched with multivitamins and minerals  your body needs to replenish lost nutrients during intensive training and everyday exercise.

Mubarak Malik or Mubarak “Bar” Malik, as he is popularly known, is a former NBA performance coach and the founder of Barcode. He was working in the NBA with the Knicks and Lakers as a performance coach when he realized there are no drinks on the market that can offer the level of hydration and nutrition required in professional training. To close this gap in the industry, Malik quit his dream career as an NBA coach and started Barcode, which is currently a multi-million brand.

With a background in exercise physiology, sports science, and nutrition, it wasn’t difficult for Malik to determine what was missing in popular drinks brands. Despite having no experience as an entrepreneur or in the drinks industry, Malik pursued his passion to meet a crisis in the sports industry. Barcode was launched in May 2021, and in less than two years, the brand earned the title as One of the “Fastest Growing Beverages in LA”, 2023, by BevNet.

“Barcode” Malik has opened a new chapter in his life and has no plans to stop. He was listed among the “Top 10 Entrepreneurs to watch in LA” in 2023. Currently, Barcode has partnered with over 10 active NBA and MLB players. Coming from a minority community, Malik achieved several milestones as an entrepreneur and is perhaps the only black founder of a beverage brand that has scaled up to this level in the health and wellness space in Los Angeles.

Bootstrapping a beverage brand single-handedly was challenging for Malik. However, he had strong research-backed planning and knew both his strengths and weaknesses. Malik knew that scaling a beverage brand was all about the volume game, so he worked hard to find the right distribution partners. Besides creating a talented team to support his vision, Malik prioritized the quality of the product to beat any competition in the market. From getting necessary feedback through direct-to-consumer analytics to seeking help from the best advisors in the food and beverage industry, Malik did it all to create the brand Barcode is today.

Barcode is currently available locally in stores in Erewhon, Gelsons, Bristol Farms, Alfred’s in SoCal, New Jersey, New York, and Texas. People in other states can order it online on Amazon. Malik is working to make the product more accessible to people globally and looks forward to seeing Barcode become a go-to drink among the new generation of sports enthusiasts. He says, “I see us partnering with the best colleges, and I see us being bought out by a bigger conglomerate one day.” Malik believes that “This brand will leave a big legacy in the beverage industry.”

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