Two Edinboro physics grads are grinding up a new way for consumers to enjoy cold brew coffee.

After nearly four years of research and development, Paul McMahon ’07 and Ryan Maloney ’08 are launching a line of cold brew coffee brewers that mobilize the brewing process while offering a versatile consumption method.

KEVO, the new line marketed as “cold brew, simplified,” brews K-Cups or ground coffee using a cold, natural brew process within the drinking tumbler. Using this process, coffee drinkers can fill the canister with cold water and affix the K-Cup or ground coffee to the brewer. Then, natural gases are released, allowing the cold water to brew the coffee for consumption.

McMahon and Maloney are launching KEVO’s official Kickstarter crowdfunding page this month, with hopes to gather support to help raise funds for injection-molding production processes.

“You can still get all the great benefits of coffee without some of the adverse health effects, and that naturally aligns with the brand that we're trying to create,” McMahon said. “Cold brew takes more time, but this results in a sweeter taste, and its healthier for you.”

When McMahon and Maloney were studying at Edinboro, the pair frequently discussed their desire to invent a product to take to market. Both avid fitness enthusiasts, the two were training on a mountain bike circuit when the idea of revolutionizing cold brew coffee entered the chat.

From there, McMahon designed the portable cold brewer using computer-aided drafting programs and produced a prototype to test. After filtering out less-than-desirable prototypes and accounting for materials, health and safety, the team settled on a concept to take to market.

When the product and business plan were in hand, the KEVO team approached the NWPA Innovation Beehive Network for small-business funding, 3D printing material and marketing and brand management.

“Paul has everything required to be a successful entrepreneur – relentless drive, ingenuity and the willingness to take risks,” said Chris Lantinen, director of the PennWest Center for Branding and Strategic Communication (Beehive). “Those attributes were evident during our collaboration. Paul being a PennWest Edinboro alum was just an added bonus.”

McMahon collaborated with Lantinen and the Beehive crew to develop the brand’s logo and marketing materials, which would be used on the company’s website and promotional material.

PennWest graduate Shelby Smith ’23, who studied graphic design at the Edinboro campus, designed the logo and the company’s business cards.

Thomas Taylor ’21, M’23 developed and produced the brand story of KEVO during his time as a graduate assistant with the Beehive. Taylor worked with McMahon to capture the brand’s essence of solving issues in the coffee industry.

With the funds from Kickstarter and the assets from the Beehive, the KEVO cadre hopes to provide their manufacturing facility, GeorgeKo out of Erie, Pennsylvania, the tools necessary for large-scale production. McMahon said the team also worked with Ben Franklin Technology Partners on an accelerator business program. KEVO has also worked with the Gannon Beehive on the logistics of the Kickstarter campaign.

Following graduation from Edinboro, McMahon served for six years in the United States military as an explosive ordnance disposal officer – deploying twice to Afghanistan. He then taught at Kennedy Catholic High School in Hermitage, Pennsylvania, for 13 years – teaching chemistry, physics, robotics and woodworking.

McMahon was teaching in the New Wilmington School District when he started the KEVO Brew company with Maloney, who worked at NASA in Hampton, Virginia, before working in aerospace manufacturing and teaching physics in the Virginia public school system.

Despite lengthy careers in science and technology, McMahon said he is looking forward to changing the way consumers drink cold brew coffee and introducing a new product to the world.

“I just love the idea of starting this company and putting the brand out there,” he said. “Brainstorming ideas, talking to people, learning about customers – I just enjoy that.”

Photo: Edinboro grad Paul McMahon poses with a KEVO coffee tumbler