A core area of focus for Alan is the food and beverage sector, in which he is growing two portfolio companies, True Fresh HPP and True Food Innovations. True Fresh HPP provides manufacturers of food and beverages with high-pressure processing (HPP) services, allowing them to bring to market truly fresh, “clean label” packaged foods that are visually appealing, preservative free and long lasting.
HPP has several key advantages, including food safety (because it inactivates pathogens such as Listeria, E.coli and Salmonella), added shelf life (which increases distribution range on fresh food), and decreased costs (by minimizing spoilage). True Fresh HPP is capitalizing on the increased consumer demand for fresh, refrigerated (not frozen or shelf stable) food assortments. HPP is approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Through the True Fresh HPP business, Alan is building out a national footprint of large-scale HPP processing facilities to enable both food manufacturers and large national retailers to accelerate and scale their efforts to convert traditionally processed foods to preservative free, healthy, refrigerated, fresh product assortments.
True Food Innovations is a sister company that provides expert guidance and services to consumer packaged goods manufacturers (CPG) and retailers seeking to bring HPP products to the market. The company also serves the beverage industry as an advisor, co-packer and private label supplier of healthy, premium quality, cold-pressed juices.
A Legacy of Innovation and Entrepreneurial Success
After graduating from the University of Colorado, Alan worked on the Mercantile Exchange in Chicago and with Drexel Burnham Lambert in London. He determined that China would offer the greatest opportunity during his lifetime and moved to Taiwan in 1986. In Taiwan, he worked for Chinese trading companies developing new products for customers such as Brookstone and Sharper Image. After a few years, Alan established a quality control inspection company that helped buyers of Chinese products ensure that they were getting the quality they expected before shipments left factories in Taiwan. Alan subsequently started True Innovations to manufacture innovative and affordable home and office furniture.
In the early 1990’s, well before China was a production destination, Alan moved the True Innovations production facility to southern China and established market leadership in designing, manufacturing and selling office and home seating to big-box retailers in the United States, Canada and Mexico. True Innovations products are sold under the licensed brand names of Lazyboy, Broyhill, Thomasville, Lane and Serta. With shipping volumes approaching 1,000 containers per month from three dedicated manufacturing plants and a China-based Design Center, the company became the largest supplier of branded home and private-label home and office furnishings from China. Customers included Costco, Sam’s Club, Office Depot, Office Max, Staples, Walmart, Target, and many others. In 2011, Li & Fung, a publically traded company in Hong Kong, acquired True Innovations.
Alan and his wife, Twila, have continued their legacy of entrepreneurship. For example, in 2012, they established True Investments, a real estate private equity firm that buys, renovates, manages and leases single-family residential properties in select markets nationwide. The principals have collectively deployed over $1 billion in real estate assets and bring a disciplined approach and expertise in sourcing, underwriting and management. True Investments is also building cash-flowing portfolios that deliver compelling returns to investors and act as a hedge against inflation.
In the health and beauty sector, True Family Enterprises develops, launches and operates high-end prestige beauty brands and retail locations. Featuring premium products and services in an attainable, yet elegant environment, Polished Perfect by Twila True aims to elevate the nail industry through its expertise in nail art, nail technique, studio design, service delivery, sanitation, stylist training and business innovation. And under True Venture Capital, Alan acts as board member, cornerstone investor, and COO of Capacitor Sciences. Capacitor Sciences has developed a solid-state capacitive energy storage technology that can be used to create ultra-high density devices that can surpass the performance of lithium ion batteries by at least 10X in every metric. This energy storage technology is applicable for high power capacitor components, electric vehicles, residential, commercial, industrial and utility-scale storage systems.
As active philanthropists, Alan and Twila founded True Children’s Home (“TCH”) in China in 2006. The
charity’s mission is to save the lives of orphaned children, fund corrective surgery, provide post-surgical care, place children with foster families, and facilitate adoption. TCH merged with Love Without Boundaries in 2011.
In addition, they founded the nonprofit True Sioux Hope Foundation, which is inspiring unprecedented,
permanent, positive change for the Sioux Tribe in South Dakota by providing much-needed funding for
education and infrastructure. True Sioux Hope Foundation is a fundraising vehicle to provide grants and
funding to highly vetted organizations that are already in place and well equipped to deliver the life-saving resources needed for the Sioux nation to survive and thrive.
Alan is fluent in Mandarin Chinese. He and Twila live in Newport Beach with their four children.
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