- October 27, 2014

Watch This Austin Company Take $1 Million From Mark Cuban

If you’re not one of the fish who swim in Mark Cuban’s TV show “Shark Tank,” chances are you missed this the other day. An Austin company called BeatBox Beverages — purveyors of fun-looking boxed fruit wines — scored $1 million in investment capital from Cuban during Friday night’s episode.

Cuban, whose fortune was made on streaming Internet video technology, knows a thing or two about products that go viral and he clearly saw a winner in BeatBox. The company’s unique selling point are their boxed wines that look like boom-box radios, but hold the equivalent of seven bottles of wine.

While one of the other “sharks” on the cutthroat investment show offered the expertise of owning a wine company, Cuban had a different idea of what BeatBox is really up to. “You sell fun,” he told the company’s founders, Brad Schultz, Aimy Steadman and Justin Fenchel.

That seemed to make it click and the negotiation escalated quickly. When Cuban offered $600,000 for 33 percent of the company, the founders seemed flattered but intelligently countered: “How about 1 million for 33 percent?”

“Yeah!” Cuban exclaimed. “Let’s party!”

So, not only did they get $1 million of Cuban’s money to go nationwide, they also raised the company’s valuation from $1.8 million to $3 million in the span of just a few breaths. Impressive!

The company started in Austin last year as a partnership between two friends with a single retail location: A Chevron station on Riverside Drive, according to The Austin Business Journal. Their first year returned over $50,000 in sales, and 2014 has seen that number quadruple.

Now, thanks to Cuban and “Shark Tank,” BeatBox Beverages is expected to be basically everywhere soon. Watch the negotiation that did it, right here:

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