WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Winston-Salem native and entrepreneur Michael Robinson took a leap of faith by starting his very own beverage company after parting ways with his full-time job in the soda industry.
Growing up in a family full of entrepreneurs, Robinson knew he wanted to own his own business from a young age.
“I watched my parents, who own Crown Trophy off Reynolda Road in Winston-Salem,” he said.
Robinson said it was that upbringing which really gave him that “itch” to start soda company Bingo-Bango Beverage Company.
“I always grew up wanting to be an entrepreneur. I just didn’t know what I wanted to do, or what it would look like,” he said.
The entrepreneurial genes run all throughout the family with Robinson’s brother owning wine and beer lounge Carolina Vineyards & Hops, where Robinson got his start.
After a short stint of trying to brew beer, he decided that it “wasn’t for him,” and decided to explore other options.
“I converted my homebrew equipment to craft soda and worked for Coca-Cola for two years to get more experience,” he said.
Robinson said it was from there he started crafting sodas, which eventually led him to selling his first few drinks at a local farmer’s market.
“I would watch folks walk away (satisfied) from tasting the product, that’s when it stuck, and the rest was history,” he said.
Robinson coins his late grandfather Emily Worthy as his inspiration for his company’s name.
“From his life lessons, his experiences growing up in the south, being a Black man in the south, in New Orleans, every time he would tell us something interesting he would use the word ‘Bingo-Bango’ with a phrase to describe something unique or exciting to him,” he said. “To me, it was more it just a phrase. I just wanted to honor him.”
Throughout this entire journey, Robinson said his family has been his support system.
“I’m so blessed to have a great family that is supportive,” he said.
Robinson commutes from Chapel Hill to Winston-Salem and multiple cities throughout the state to specially to deliver his products which vary from Passion Fruit Strawberry to French Vanilla flavored sodas.
He’s added contactless delivery options since the start of the pandemic. You can find his products at Total Wine & More in Winston-Salem and several businesses throughout the Raleigh, Charlotte and Winston-Salem area. Check out Bingo-Bango Beverage's website for more information.
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