Founder and CEO, Sonoma Brands
Jon Sebastiani was born and raised in Sonoma, where he currently resides with his wife and children. He grew up working in and surrounded by the food, wine, and hospitality industries and he’s always felt an innate interest in business, which led him to get involved in his family’s winery, Viansa, at an early age.
Steering the sales & marketing for Viansa and eventually leading the business as President, he positioned it as one of the most successful destination wineries in the Napa and Sonoma valleys. After helping drive the M&A process, he served as Managing Director of wine.com, assisting in the turnaround toward it’s first profitable quarter.
Jon has always been an avid runner and when he was training for the New York City Marathon in 2009, he realized the opportunity to turn a commonly used training food into something truly special. During that same period of time, he was completing his dual MBA from the Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA program – and KRAVE was actually born of the thesis for his Entrepreneurship Class. With encouragement from his professor and mentor, Steve Blank, he became intent on making jerky that tastes good without chemicals and additives. Jon founded KRAVE Pure Foods in 2009, which went on to become one of the fastest growing CPGs in the country, culminating in the acquisition by The Hershey Company in 2015.
Creating a fund like Sonoma Brands has been a dream of Jon’s for some time. Sonoma Brands is a consumer products incubator and venture fund that both innovates and invests in category disrupting brands – developing foods that are both better-for-you AND absolutely delicious. Sonoma Brands is well positioned to support and develop promising small to mid-sized companies with a proven concept of success, an authentic story and a passion for originality. Additionally, Sonoma Brands helps build management teams in critical areas and works collaboratively to accelerate growth, drive brand awareness and create exceptional strategic value for all stakeholders.