A few months after showcasing his line of military-inspired energy shots in New Beverage Showdown 3 at BevNET Live Summer 2012, RuckPack founder Robert Dyer pitched his brand to a panel of veteran investors and entrepreneurs on the ABC reality TV show “Shark Tank.” Dyer’s appearance on the show came about a month after Pro NRG founder Tanya Patruno convinced “Shark Tank” panelist Daymond John to invest $250,000 against a 30 percent stake in her protein-infused water company.
Dressed in camouflage fatigues, Dyer, an active-duty officer in the U.S. Marine Corps, asked the panel for $75,000 for a 10 percent stake in RuckPack, which he claimed is “the world’s first peak performance nutrition shot” and “designed and tested by spec ops forces.” He noted that the supplement does not contain caffeine, and formulated with particular consideration for military snipers who shun the ingredient when in the field because of the jitters that it can cause. Nevertheless, Dyer said that RuckPack had the potential for mainstream appeal, and “built this for the war fighter, but everyone has a battle to win.”
Dyer said that he wanted to use the $75,000 investment to increase the scale of production for RuckPack, which he said could bring the manufacturing cost of the product from $0.80-0.85 down to approximately $0.50. The funding would enable the company to meet dramatic demand for RuckPack, which has sold 15,000 units in just over 90 days, Dyer told the panel.
While three of the five panelists offered praise for the brand but ultimately passed on Dyer’s proposal, the remaining two countered with a plan to team up and invest $150,000 in RuckPack for a 20 percent stake in the company. Dyer – who appeared to be astonished by the offer – quickly accepted the deal.
“This is a huge boost for RuckPack,” said Dyer after the broadcast. “We are indebted to everyone at ‘Shark Tank’ for their belief in the consumer value and future potential of RuckPack. This infusion of funds will help us to expand production to meet the already strong demand as well as to extend national distribution.”