Innovation Pet entered the Shark Tank to pitch their pet products that include everything from chicken coops to plush toys for dogs to scratchers for cats. Their items, which have won awards at Global Pet Expo, can be found at Pet Sense, Pet Valu, Petco and Pet Supermarket.
We interviewed Tim Taft and Victoria Coopman about their progressive company. When asked about their future plans, they said, “Our company name says it all about our goals; we want to continue to bring amazing products to pet parents and animal lovers.”
Here’s what they told us about…
How the Idea For the Company Came About Over Chicken Salad
Victoria and I ran a company together during the time of the financial collapse and took the company to the highest sales even during the toughest financial times and built the company to over $30 million in sales. Victoria retired after over 12 years as president. As I remained on, I met with Victoria often for guidance and just to stay in touch. And during one lunch meeting I finally talked Victoria out of being a full-time grandmother and going back into the workforce, and Innovation Pet was born. Who knew a chicken salad could create a company?
Their 1st Product- Kitty Connection
Our first product was the incredible Kitty Connection, which we spent over a year developing. We spent several months in cat rescues and animal shelters, with family who have cats, and of course our own pets, just playing with them, watching them and looking at toys on the market. So combining that time and research with our 35 years of combined experience in the pet industry enabled the amazing Kitty Connection Cat Toy to be born, which was our first product. The hard work paid off as we have won major industry awards, as well as awards from major retailers for the Kitty Connection.
Our best selling items in the company are our chicken coops as we sell them to both big and small retailers. They are amazing coops because they combine function with fashion. What I mean by that is they are great looking coops that make it easy to raise the chickens. But our Kitty Connection is an amazing cat toy that continues to win awards and has grown to more and more cat products including our new Lattice Ball launcher.
Their ‘Tank’ Experience- From TV to Business Meeting
Victoria applied online over a year-and-a-half ago and things just kept progressing until the day we went in front of the Sharks. It truly was a fast and healthy process because it makes you look at your company and put together a strong plan for sales and growth as it prepares you to go in front of some amazing successful business people. So I would suggest to anyone to go through the process as even if you are not selected, it is a healthy process that makes you look honestly at your company…At first all the lights and producers, and cameras make you nervous, but I was fascinated that after less than a minute, it really turns in to a board meeting, or a customer meeting where you are defending your business plan or defending and explaining your products. It truly goes from a TV experience to a business meeting.