Twenty-two-year-old entrepreneurs Nick Hamburger and Zack Schreier began their first enterprise in sixth grade, charging college students at their Chicago-area college $3 for some cool Japanese soda pop that they purchased for $1.25 — till the administration shut them down. Ten years later, their newest enterprise – a line of wholesome, egg white-based chips known as Quevos – simply secured a roughly $400,000 funding on the ABC TV actuality present “Shark Tank” from Daniel Lubetzky, who invented Sort Bars.
“I’m excited to assist Nick and Zack fulfill Quevos’ potential. They’ve created a really cool and differentiated product with enormous mainstream attraction, and I like that they’ve been finest buddies and companion entrepreneurs since childhood,” Lubetzky mentioned after saying the funding on Friday (Jan. 22) on “Shark Tank.”
Hamburger advised PYMNTS in an interview that Lubetzky agreed to purchase 10 % of the corporate for about $200,000 money and a $200,000 credit score line, and also will present the 22-year-olds with steering.
“We had been hoping to make a cope with Daniel as a result of he is amazingly skilled and profitable in [the] healthy-food house,” Hamburger mentioned. “We’ll be on recurring calls with him to test in and get his strategic recommendation, and he additionally has a complete staff at his funding workplace that may assist.”
An Thought Born From a Soiled Omelet Pan
It’s a giant transfer for a corporation that every one began when Schreier, a Sort 1 diabetic, talked about to Hamburger that he favored the crispy, chip-like leftovers that may stay in a pan after he made a wholesome egg-white omelet.
“Zack got here to me on the finish of highschool and mentioned, ‘Hey I make these crispy egg items and I like them. They’re form of like chips. What if we made a snack out of eggs?’” Hamburger recalled. “We each instantly noticed the promise in that, as a result of there actually had been no high-protein, low-carb chips [on the market].”
Hamburger mentioned he and Schreier – who had been buddies since grade college – at all times thought they could sometime open a enterprise, in order that they had been at all times on the
lookout for good product concepts.
They picked the identify “Quevos” as a mix of the phrase “fast” and “huevos,” Spanish for “eggs.” The pair then started engaged on a recipe, whilst Hamburger went off to the College of Chicago to review philosophy and Schreier attended Williams School to main in economics and philosophy.
The thought kicked into excessive gear in 2018, once they attended a 10-week entrepreneurship course and received $15,000 in seed cash by way of the College of Chicago’s College New Venture Challenge.
“At that time, we had been hooked,” Hamburger mentioned.
Two months later, the pair received a spot within the Kraft-Heinz Springboard Incubator Program for brand spanking new shopper packaged items, which Hamburger mentioned “was loopy, as a result of there have been a few hundred candidates for 5 spots and we had been the one pre-revenue firm. We additionally had raised no cash, and we had a staff of all faculty youngsters who had no expertise.”
By then, the thought had superior far sufficient that Hamburger and Schreier determined to give up college to pursue Quevos full time.
They started promoting chips in autumn of 2018. Some two years later, the snacks can be found at Quevos.com, Amazon.com and at greater than 1,000 Complete Meals Markets, Wegmans, Vitamin Shoppes and different retailers, accessible in 4 keto-friendly flavors and two “traditional” ones.
The chips’ keto-friendly variations provide eight grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber per bag, with simply 4 grams of internet carbs. Quevos is at the moment providing a $14.99 five-package “Shark Tank Intro Pack,” whereas the chips retail in shops for about $2.49 a package deal.
Hamburger mentioned the corporate, which has 15 manufacturing individuals and 7 full-timers or consultants in operations, sells about 75,000 luggage per 30 days, however expects that to quickly triple from the “Shark Tank” publicity. He forecasts gross sales to finally stabilize at about 125,000 luggage per 30 days, permitting Quevos to interrupt even by yr’s finish.
The entrepreneurs have raised some $2 million so far by way of developmental grants, angel investments and a $72,000 Kickstarter marketing campaign (donors acquired free chips quite than fairness).
Hamburger mentioned Quevos plans to make use of Lubetsky’s roughly $400,000 funding to rent extra employees, together with somebody to develop extra retail distribution.
A 5-Yr Plan
Hamburger and Schreier not too long ago figured they’d promote the corporate after placing in about 5 extra years. However Hamburger mentioned Lubetsky has inspired them to remain longer and develop the corporate additional. He not too long ago bought Sort Bars to sweet big Mars in a deal that reportedly valued the corporate at about $5 billion.
Schreier returned to varsity after Quevos acquired manufacturing off the bottom, however stays on the corporate’s board. Hamburger serves as CEO and has but to return to highschool, however expects to take action at some point. He desires to get again to his unique plan of finding out for a profession round meditation or psychological well being, vowing to finally take a yr off to stay at a monastery and meditate. “That’s one thing I’ve at all times needed to do,” Hamburger mentioned. “But it surely’s clearly been pushed off now.”