Teaspressa Before Shark Tank
Teaspressa is the invention of female coffee-lover turned entrepreneur Allison DeVane of Arizona. Teaspressa is a range of concentrated teas that are comparable to some gourmet coffees. Allison originally came up with this idea when her love for coffee and her frequent consumption of the hot beverage was giving her unbearable headaches. Having experience in the coffee and tea industry, Allison started looking at an alternative drink and Teaspressa was born. Having done research into many various blends of tea, Allison found that some teas had the same amount of caffeine as her beloved coffee but she was able to enjoy the tea without the awful headaches.
Teaspressa will appeal to coffee lovers who are looking for a full-bodied flavor without the crash that can often follow having a cup of coffee. Teaspressa is a tea lover’s dream with the many flavors available as well as the health benefits gained from some of the different blends.
Allison wanted to make Teaspressa into the success she believed it was and get it into retail outlets all across the United Sates. She looked to the shark tank for some extra revenue as well as business expertise that the sharks could provide. The question is, what will the shark’s think of this business idea and will any of them be willing to bite?
Teaspressa On Shark Tank
Allison enters the shark tank, introduces herself and her product to the sharks and tells them that she is looking for a $50,000 investment in return for a ten per cent equity share of her company, Teaspressa. Allison goes on tell the sharks that Teaspressa is a collection of concentrated tea shots. This tea is not like your ordinary cup of tea made with a tea-bag. It is made just like an espresso. This means that it is full on flavor and has just as much caffeine as coffee except you don’t have to experience the jitters or the crash associated with coffee. Allison declares that she would love some of the sharks to come on board and work with her before she gives some custom-made Teaspressa drinks to the sharks.
Robert asks if Teaspressa is operating out of a store and asks to see the packaging of the product. Allison explains that when she originally started Teaspressa, she operated out of pop-up stores in her home-state of Arizona. Then, she decided to take the plunge and make Teaspressa her full-time job as she has always wanted to start a business. Through sheer determination, Allison got the product into a store in Phoenix where it is now stocked and sold. In the five months since that happened, Allison made $26,000 in sales.
Kevin is interested to see how the package of tea can be turned into a product and what else from the Teaspressa range must be bought for him to make the tea at home. Allison explains that if you buy the package of tea as well as a custom-made Teaspressa pot, you experience the full flavor of the tea. However, it Is not quite as good as experiencing it at a store that stocks it that has the use of a proper machine to create the espresso-like shots of tea.
Mark wants to know where the product can be bought to which Allison replies online. Lori clarifies that as well as being sold in a store in Arizona, the tea and the pot is available to buy online. Lori asks what Allison’s plan is and what she would like to do with the product. Allison replies that she wants to be known as the person who made tea cool.
There is a lot of confusion in the shark tank when Allison announces that she wants to make the machines that can brew the espresso-like shots of tea. Robert and Barbara look utterly bewildered at this point. Kevin interjects claiming that Robert is very confused. The sharks are no longer clear on what the product is – would they be investing in the concentrated packages of tea or the machinery and technology needed to brew drinks like this. The fact that Allison is in a retail store too is further confusing Robert. Allison responds that the process of starting Teaspressa and getting it off its feet has been aggressive and that she is a hustler when it comes to drumming up new business.
Kevin has a negative opinion on Allison’s presentation so far and Allison looks less than impressed at this admission.
Lori tries to clear things up by asking is it the machine for making the tea that Allison is selling or is it the actual packages of tea. At this point Allison veers completely off the point and starts talking about designs she does for latte cups in the store that she is in. Robert tries to reign her back in by asking how exactly it relates to the product she has brought to the shark tank.
Kevin further dampens Allison’s mood by comparing the whole presentation to scenes in movies where trap doors open and characters fall into actual shark tanks. Kevin goes on to say that this Allison’s chance to sell her product and explain it properly so she should make it good.
Allison explains that with the $50,000 that she is looking for in the shark tank today, she wants to expand her website and have it tailored to sell the Teaspressa products. She also wants to finish developing one of the machines that will make the Teaspressa teas.
Barbara steps in at this point and says that not communicating clearly enough seems to be where Allison is going wrong. For Barbara, she could not have a business partnership like that and for that reason, she declares herself out.
Kevin declares that he has no idea what Allison does and he too declares himself out. At this point, it is clear Allison is getting upset that the sharks don’t seem to understand her concept or what she wants to achieve with Teaspressa. She states that she is in the shark tank today to make the next ‘Starbucks’ of tea. Mark kindly tells her to take a few deep breaths and says that the hardest part of starting a business is right where Allison is at now – having a big vision and trying to share it with others. Mark tactfully tells Allison that she has done a great job articulating how much she wants to make tea as big as coffee. The only problem is that Allison came too early. She is trying to learn all about running a business at the same time as trying to get her vision out there for others to see. Mark advises her that it is impossible to learn the business side of things at the same time as trying to get a business started. Allison feebly states that she knows her margins to which Mark replies that she has to know more than that to be successful. He finishes by saying that he believes Allison has a great vision but unfortunately he is also out.
Robert says that it is a testament to Allison’s character and excitement regarding her product that she has held the sharks’ attention and they are all still talking. He also says that anyone else who would have given a presentation like hers would have lost the sharks after just a few short minutes. However, for Robert Allison’s excitement is not a focus that will make a successful business. For that reason, Robert also declares himself out.
Lori is now Allison’s only hope of leaving the shark tank with a deal. Lori, as kind as ever, focuses on the positives of Allison’s products. She tells her that the teas tasted great and that all of the sharks loved them. Lori goes onto explain that in business, you have to learn to crawl and walk before you can run and each step must be taken one step at a time. Lori believes that if Allison does that she and Teaspressa can make it. However, today she came to the shark tank a little too early. For that reason, Lori declares herself out. She does however tell Allison to focus and take things slowly. She believes that way, she will succeed. Allison apologies claiming her presentation came out like ‘word vomit’. Lori kindly tells her not to look at the shark tank experience as a failure. Kevin is quick to disagree claiming that Allison should look at it as a failure. This tips Allison over the edge. She gets visibly upset and as the tears start to fall she states that she is so passionate about Teaspressa and making it work. Lori tells her not to give up, if the passion is there, she will make it work. Robert kindly gets up to give an upset Allison a handkerchief. The sharks wish her the best of luck before Allison leaves the shark tank with no deal.
Teaspressa Now in 2018- The After Shark Tank Update
Since appearing on Shark Tank, although Allison and her company Teaspressa did not succeed in getting a deal, the appearance on Shark Tank resulted in a lot of media coverage on the product. Since the Shark Tank episode aired, many people opted to buy Allison’s premium, full-bodied teas on the Teaspressa website. The website has been further developed so it catered to sell to whoever would like to buy the Teaspressa products – one of the things Allison ultimately wanted to do.
Although it is early days for the product and it may be some time before it takes off on a global scale, so far Allison is following Lori’s advice and taking small steps at a time. We wish her and Teaspressa the very best of luck!