My Cold Snap Before Shark Tank – The Development of a Cool Concept
The business partnership of friends and golfing buddies, Carlos Ortiz and Scott Duff, invented My Cold Snap way back in the year 2000. They were well accustomed to beer that warmed up too quickly in the blazing Texan sun after a round of golf, they were also surprised to discover that no one had previously invented a hand-held cooler for individual drinks. They developed a cup that contained ice and could snap on to a can. They received a patent for their original design two years later.
My Cold Snap on Shark Tank
In 2012 Carlos and Scott appeared on the Shark Tank and announced they were seeking $50,000 for a full 100% of their company with a 12% royalty on future sales.
This was an unexpected early development, the sharks looked confused as to why anyone would want to give away their entire company if it was profitable. They looked dubious straight away but Carlos pushed on with the pitch.
As he introduced the simple solution to the problem of warm drinks, Scott demonstrated My Cold Snap. Filling the hand-hand cooler cup with some ice water and sealing the cup with the leak proof ring, he easily slipped a can inside. He then effectively demonstrated the effectiveness of the seal, he held the cup upside down and not a drop trickled out as the cup gripped the can inside it firmly. It was as good a demonstration as such a basic concept could really give, and the sharks made appreciative noises, but they had other things on their minds.
Carlos had barely finished speaking when Daymond got back to the unusual aspect of the partners offer, namely the transferral of 100% of the business. Looking forward to the eventual nature of such an agreement, he surmised that the sharks would be working for Carlos and Scott.
Carlos stumbled through an attempt to answer that, he faltered badly, attempting to explain ‘the important part’ as he saw it.
Daymond interrupted him, ‘The important part would have been if you had a large amount of sales’ he stated, still seeing a problem with the 100% equity offer.
Carlos piped up ‘A quarter of a million’, suddenly announcing that that was how many units had been sold.
Seemingly unimpressed with such a large and unexpected figure, Kevin O’Leary asked where those units had been sold.
‘In the promotional products industry’ Carlos replied, but the vagueness of his answer seemed unconvincing. Scott helped out, explaining that they had received a 10% licencing fee at the time.
Daymond asked if that deal was now over, Carlos and Scott confirmed that it was.
Kevin inquired what had happened with the deal. Carlos explained that the large promotional company that they had been trading with had gone into bankruptcy shortly afterwards. Unprompted, he offered the information that there were products in warehouses in Houston waiting to be sold.
Daymond jumped on that like a flash, ‘How many units?’ he asked. 20,000 was the answer.
After another gentle attempt from Robert to get more information from the pair, Kevin O’Leary was no longer in the mood for beating around the bush and went straight to the heart of the matter.
‘Why are you telling us you can’t sell your product? What is it we don’t know yet and we’ll find out in two seconds?’ he pushed.
Carlos looked worried and was breathing heavily as Scott began a disjointed explanation of how the pair had invested $200,000 to go towards the tooling process. He admitted almost instantly that they hadn’t spent the money wisely.
Mark Cuban wanted to know how much money the pair had recouped on their investment. Scott tried to talk about percentages but Robert pinned him down to a straightforward dollar figure. When Scott revealed it was a meagre $25,000 Robert asked ‘That’s all you’ve made?’ in disbelief.
Barbara managed to reveal another vital element of the mystery with one pertinent question ‘When did the promotional company go bankrupt?’ she asked.
After some consideration Carlos admitted it had been back in 2004, eight years previously. At this news the sharks were visibly cooling off of any interest in the business without the aid of ice.
‘What have you been doing for eight years?’ Robert wanted to know.
‘You put it on ice right?’ Quipped Daymond.
Carlos begged to differ, they hadn’t been putting it on ice, he attempted to explain how the partners, now that they were older and wiser, were ‘re-launching’ the product. But it was a hard story to sell, and Carlos wasn’t the most articulate of speakers, particularly under stress, and he was currently experiencing plenty of that.
Barbara Corcoran spoke up, the business felt like a ‘cold body being rolled out’ to her and she commented ‘If you’re not excited about running your business then I’m not going to be’ and without listening to Carlos and his hurried interjections, Barbara dropped out of the negotiations.
Robert didn’t leave Barbara’s rejection as the only one for long. He saw the product as ‘long dead’ and compared the business to a boulder rolling downhill. With little further explanation, and none was really required, he also dropped out.
Kevin employed his customary directness when speaking next. He could see no money making opportunities in the business or the product. There were vast issues to overcome to make the product available to retailers. There would be no interest from beverage manufacturers who would be unwilling to increase their production and packaging costs by using the Cold Snap as a promotional item. He left the negotiations with the stinging remark ‘I have no interest in joining you in that hell.’ and with that, only two Sharks were left.
Daymond pointed out that for a 12% royalty he could probably get a Worldwide brand like Mickey Mouse on the side of a cup and it would obviously be far better for sales than the unknown Cold Snap. He advised Scott and Carlos that 5% royalties would be a much more appropriate figure to expect for an unknown product but that free advice was all he was willing to give them, and Daymond dropped swiftly out of the negotiations too.
Carlos made one last effort to improve the sharks mood. He started introducing a more flexible attitude towards the question of royalties but long before his convoluted statement reached any kind of conclusion, Mark Cuban was ready to have his say.
Mark was disarmingly direct. He didn’t like the product, he didn’t want it and he didn’t need it. Dramatically ripping up a sheet of paper to symbolize the end of negotiations, he quickly confirmed ‘I’m out’ and left the Texan businessmen hot and bothered, without any deal at all.
My Cold Snap Now in 2018 – After Shark Tank Update
After such a unanimous rejection from the sharks and the apparent dormant state of their sales, its no real surprise that Scott and Carlos appear to have given up on My Cold Snap as a business.
There was an increased level of interest in the product after the show was aired in 2012 but it wasn’t enough of an increase and it didn’t last very long. My Cold Snap was still being advertised for sale online in mid 2013, but at some stage since then the business appears to have sunk into the icy waters of failure and nothing but a few traces of the company remain.
All channels of communication with the business have now been closed, along with their website and social media accounts. It seems certain that the friends and partners are no longer stuck with a business that they couldn’t make any money from. There’s probably very little to console them after all the time and money they put into the project but at least now they do have something that’ll keep their beers cold.