Small-town entrepreneur Destiny Padgett appeared on Shark Tank season 12 with big dreams and even bigger ambitions. Destiny became an entrepreneur out of necessity because of an unplanned pregnancy leading to a single-parent life. She started her first Etsy shop in 2014 when it became clear that she had to do something to take care of her son.
Destiny sought a $200,000 investment for 10% equity stakes in her company.
Scroll down to know if any Sharks found her presentation lit enough to invest!
What Is Lit Handlers
Lit Handlers are insulating drinkware supplied with reinforced handles and pockets. The handles are resizable, allowing users to keep their hands dry and clean. You can drink anything from cold brews to hot beverages without feeling the condensation on your hands and risking an unfortunate freefall of your favorite drinks.
A chirpy Destiny Padgett walked to the Shark Tank season 12 stage to reel in a Shark as a partner for her business, Lit Handlers. She opened her pitch by emphasizing the need for better insulators for traveling mugs, bottles, and tumblers. Destiny pointed out that the usual design of drink insulators keeps the drink hot or cold. However, it doesn’t make carrying them around any easier. If not fit for the size, these drink insulators can let loose, costing you a good brew or messing up your appearance.
Destiny highlighted her product’s handle and pocket design and how it served three purposes: heat retention, storage, and handling. After Destiny finished her pitch and presented the Sharks with the samples, Lori complimented the sturdiness of her design and the excellent grip it provided.
Kevin was blunt about his reservations and asked what’s stopping someone else from replicating her design? Destiny shared that she had a patent pending on the pocket and handle design for drinkware insulators. Lori asked about her bestsellers, and Destiny replied that it was a tie between the 30-ounce size, pint-sized ice cream, and slim handler. She added that she didn’t make them by hand but instead had manufacturers in China.
The Sharks were curious about her sales. So, Destiny shared that she had made $630,000 in lifetime sales and was expecting to make $780,000, which garnered explosive reactions from the Sharks. Robert commented that things suddenly became more interesting for him. Kevin revealed that he thought the product was total crap until she shared the sales. Rober then asked what she would do if someone introduced the same product minus the pocket. Destiny admitted that it had already happened on her 30-ounce size right after she started her business. So, she had to get creative and introduce the pocket with her handle.
Lori inquired about the production cost and profit margins, and Destiny’s answer impressed everyone. Robert called her a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and Mark complemented her knowing her numbers. He then asked her about the wholesale and retail sales division, and Destiny said it’s split right in the middle. Mark thought she only sold from her Etsy shop, but Destiny corrected him, saying that she sold from her website, Amazon and Etsy. When asked, Destiny revealed she owned 100% of her company and had no loan.
The Sharks agreed that Destiny didn’t need them, but the young entrepreneur insisted she wanted one of the Sharks to be on her time so she could scale globally. She wanted to resolve the licensing issues, take her business to bookstores and college libraries, and make her entrepreneurial family proud.
Kevin announced since he didn’t have drink handlers on his portfolio, he’d offer Destiny $200,000 for 10%.
Mark complimented for starting a wonderful business netting $200,000 in profits, but he didn’t think the business was a great fit for him, so he was out.
Lori followed suit, citing that Destiny didn’t really need her.
Daymond explained that since he is already in the business, he knows which companies to contact, how to get the licensing, and everything else. He offered Destiny $200,000 for 25% equity stakes.
Kevin raised her stakes to match Daymond’s, reasoning he was better than him.
Destiny countered with 20%, and Daymond said he would do it if she didn’t wait for Kevin, and Destiny agreed to close the deal immediately.
Lit Handlers is still in business and have expanded its design range exponentially. Although they didn’t close any licensing deals as Daymond promised in Shark Tank season 12, they have made $1.2 million in revenue in their last reported sales.
Our Review of Lit Handlers
Lit Handlers seem like a simple accessory, but the diversified size range and design options have made them a hit among students and teens. The reinforced handle with a small pocket sets it apart from the usual run-on-the-mill drinkware insulators and facilitates your grip on your go-to drinks. Users can keep their pens, keys, lip balms, and similar essentials in the handle pocket to maximize the holding capacity of their hands. At first, we found the product to be just another Koozie. However, with a few adjustments and variations, Destiny has made her product a bestseller.
Pros of Lit Handlers
- Prevents condensation
- Retains heat
Cons of Lit Handlers
- Not licensed for merchandise
- Easy to replicate
Who Is Lit Handlers for?
Lit Handlers are for those who don’t like clammy hands while holding their drinks and are prone to accidents like tripping and falling. The product has the potential to be the next style statement for students and tech gurus.
Are There Any Alternatives?
Despite being a patented design, Lit Handlers are not distinctive enough for people, so they are still competing with the Shark Tank business like Koozie and fending off cheap ripoffs online.
Our Final Thoughts
We think Destiny should push for the license, as discussed on the show, and try to breach the print-on-demand industry and expand operations to branding and marketing. She can eventually adopt a dropshipping strategy after finding a supplier for white-labeled products.