Mark Cuban’s investments now include a vegan do-it-yourself milk machine. In an episode of Shark Tank that premiered on March 26, the wealthy businessman eagerly invested $ 2 million in a company called Numilk, founded in 2018 by entrepreneurs Ari Tolwin and Joe Savino.
Numilk makes kiosk style machines for stores that make plant-based milk such as almond milk and oat milk.
Each kiosk generates about $ 50,000 in sales per year, Tolwin explained on the show. It costs the company $ 30,000 to make one machine. However, he anticipates costs will drop by about half as machines become more popular and more consumers switch to plant-based milk.
As Tolwin and Savino Cuban and the other sharks explained, their business model also includes two other products designed to make plant-based milk more accessible to consumers. Numilk’s current line of products includes a stainless steel countertop for cafes and coffee shops, which retail for $ 699 each.
However, a smaller home countertop priced at $ 199 caught the Cuban’s interest. The in-home unit won’t be released until summer 2022, but can already be pre-ordered via the Numilk website. It’s basically like a Keurig-style coffee maker dispensing vegan milk instead of java. And it can make a variety of beverages like almond milk, oat milk, matcha lattes, and protein shakes from sachets of ingredients.
“We took our food vending machine and scaled it down to work on your countertops,” noted Tolwin.
Mark Cuban’s Numilk investment strategy
Cubans were fascinated by Numilk’s products, so he tried the kiosk for himself. At each kiosk, a customer spends $ 2.00 on a reusable bottle, and it costs $ 3.99 every time they fill the bottle with fresh plant milk. Dollar.
Cubans chose almond milk for themselves and was impressed with how “quick” and “cool” the kiosk was. The final product baffled the billionaire too. “The milk I just made is amazing,” he explained. “You can tell that it’s fresh almonds.”
Despite the ingenuity of the kiosk and the upcoming in-home machine, Numilk still has to be profitable. Tolwin announced that Numilk has lost a total of $ 7 million in over three years in business, largely due to high research and development costs.
Cuban was unwilling to give Tolwin and Savino what they asked – a $ 1 million investment for only 5 percent equity, which equates to a company valuation of $ 20 million – but he had an investment plan.
Seeing great potential in the home countertop machine, Cuban offered Tolwin and Savino $ 2 million. Under his terms, a million dollars would be 7 percent equity, while the other million would be a loan with 3 percent interest. Cuban also demanded “an additional 3 percent of the shares as advisory shares or pure equity”.
He added, “But if you don’t use the loan, you don’t have to give me the extra 3 percent. So all in all, if you use all of the capital, it’s $ 2 million for 10 percent. “
Cuban explains his decision to invest despite some financial problems to Tolwin and Savino: “I obviously love the stainless steel version that you are currently selling in coffee shops. I think this will sell like hotcakes at home. I think you will easily sell a million units. “
The couple eventually accepted the Cuban’s offer.
Mark Cuban’s vegan investment portfolio
Numilk is hardly the first vegan brand that Cuban has invested in. In fact, the Pittsburgh native has invested in plant-based companies for years and has become a key player in the meat-free food space.
Cuban invested $ 300,000 in vegan meat brand Everything Legendary during another Shark Tank episode that aired earlier this month, and its extensive investment portfolio of plant-based brands also includes Wild Earth, Mrs. Goldfarbs Unreal Deli, and several others.
“[The vegan meat market] will continue to grow rapidly, ”Cuban recently told LIVEKINDLY. “People recognize [eating plant-based is] better for your own health, for the environment and it now tastes great! “
About the author
Samantha Leffler is a writer and editor who writes on food, health, and entertainment. She was previously the food editor for Us Weekly. Her work has appeared on BuzzFeed, MarthaStewart.com, FoodNetwork.com, Cosmopolitan, The Hollywood Reporter, and other media.