We’ve all heard of ancient grains, but we don’t often hear about products using sorghum. Dustin Finkel wanted to change that. With his experience in the food industry, he created a healthy snack alternative with some great flavors. Will the sharks get in on this deal during the Season 11 pitch? Find out in our
Shark Tank Ka-Pop! Update
- Entrepreneur: Dustin Finkel
- Business: Ancient grain popped snack chips
- Ask: $350,000 for 5% equity
- Result: No deal
- Shark: None
According to Dustin Finkel, a food industry veteran and part-time superhero, found a gap in the ancient grains market. Sorghum is apparently delicious but is gluten, allergy, and GMO-free. Finkel has created a popped snack chip using sorghum and cold-pressed oil. Currently, he has four flavors: Rosemary Garlic, Salt & Vinegar, Vegan Cheddar & Garlic, and Olive Oil & Sea Salt.
When the sharks get their samples, they are blown away. The chips are actually good! Kevin O’Leary actually states that these are the best gluten-free snacks he’s had. The good news? Dustin helped launched one of the first gluten-free brands in the nation with General Mills.
However, he has a lot of other investors, though most of them work on convertible notes rather than equity. The sharks, understandably, get nervous when there are other investors. The company made $150,000 in the previous year, which also isn’t great.
Barbara Corcoran compliments Dustin’s salesmanship, but doesn’t think she can do anything for Ka-Pop! She drops out. Mark Cuban doesn’t think the entrepreneur thinks there’s something that can be improved, which is a clear sticking point for him. He drops out as well.
Guest shark Rohan Oza thinks it’s too early, and the margins and sales aren’t enough for investing. Lori Greiner agrees with Barbara, saying she doesn’t know how she can help. They’re both out, leaving Kevin O’Leary.
Kevin doesn’t have an ‘ancient grain’ product in his portfolio, which is a huge selling point for him. He makes an offer: $350,000 for 17.5% equity in the company. Dustin counters for $500,000 at 10% equity instead. Unfortunately, they can’t agree on a course of action. Because of this, Ka-Pop! walks out of the
How is the ancient grain snack chip doing today? We found out in our
Ka-Pop! has been featured in Forbes, Red Tricycle, and VegOut. The company seems to be doing well and sells multiple new flavors on Amazon. In addition to the flavored featured on
During research for our Ka-Pop! update, we found that the company merged with Bubba’s Fine Foods. Together, they created Awakened Foods, a launchpad for new ancient grain food startups. This recent move has been great for both Ka-Pop! and their partner. Ka-Pop! has an estimated yearly revenue of $250,000.
You can find the other company updates from Season 11 Episode 12 here:
Don’t forget to take a look at our Season 11 products page! We’ve got more company updates from