Heavy interviewed president and CEO, Justin Fenchel about his unique alcohol company.
1. The Founders Were Sick of Boxed Wine
Fenchel explained how the idea came about, saying,
“We all used to drink boxed wine and we would always see it at parties. But we asked ourselves why we were buying it when it tastes terrible and isn’t marketed to us. So we figured if we could recreate a way more fun, better tasting and better marketed boxed wine we could do really well.”
Their drink is wine-based and made of fermented oranges. As far as flavors go, the most popular are Blue Razzberry Lemonade and Cranberry Limeade.
2. The Team Is From the University of Texas
When assembling his company’s team, Fenchel looked to his college classmates.
I reached out to a few of my classmates at the University of Texas who I felt totally got the idea and also had complimentary skills to my financial background. Dan Singer was an expert in operations, Jason Schieck in marketing, and Aimy Steadman with websites and SEO.
The friends had no experience with working in alcoholic beverages. “What’s funny is no one on the team had ANY prior experience in the alcohol industry but somehow we figured it out,” Fenchel said.
3. They Were Nervous on ‘Shark Tank
When asked if they were nervous, he said:
Oh completely. How could you not be? I actually forgot one of my lines during our pitch because I pretty much just couldn’t believe we were actually filming for the show. But as Aimy says, the anticipation of going out there to face the sharks was actually much more nerve wracking then once we got going. Once we started telling our story and answering questions the nerves all went away. We were in the proverbial zone.
4. They Tested the Product at Parties
To test out their drink, they emptied bags of wine and filled them with different flavored alcohol mixes and brought them to parties.
“Each time the raspberry lemonade flavor was the most popular so we knew that had to be our first flavor. After that it was a lot of asking our customers what kinds of flavors they would want to see, and then our whole team went to our flavor company, Flavorman, to try out some new samples,” he explained.
5. They’re Offering a ‘Shark Tank’ Special
Tho celebrate their reality show debut, the company is now offering a Shark Tank Special for $64.99 with FREE shipping.
It includes Blue Razzberry Lemonade and Cranberry Limeade and serves 68, and contains almost as much alcohol as in 14 bottles of wine.