What happened to plated after shark tank?

Plated : What happened to plated after shark tank?

Tarun Paliwal

Published on:  

December 5 , 2023


9 min read

Plated : What happened to plated after shark tank?

The table seemed bare in the early 2010s for working professionals who needed dinner served but don't want to use the drive-through, frozen supper, or food delivery service. The idea of packaged food kits was not yet explored, and options like Blue Apron, HelloFresh, and various others were not around at the time.

In this situation, Plated stepped in with its fresh prepackaged, prepped ingredients. Shark Tank's Season 5, Episode 22 featured creators Nick Taranto and Josh Hix. They claimed that Plated's objective was to improve American eating habits. The request from the sharks for $500,000 for 4% interest in the business was initially met with a sense of skepticism, but the idea quickly gave birth to a lively discussion on culinary competitiveness, margins, and the struggle to become a culinary icon.

In this article let's take a look at Plated's Shark Tank journey, the product, its founders, the pitch, and where they are now.

What is Plated?

Source: Plated on Facebook

The gourmet meal delivery service Plated specializes in meal kit subscriptions. Buyers now have a novel way to obtain the ingredients and instructions for their chosen dishes. Plated precisely analyzed the boxes before shipping in order to achieve a true flavor. All customers need to do is follow the recipe's directions to prepare the food, and with that, dinner is served.

Home cooking is streamlined, improved, and diversified by Plated. This service's subscriptions offer all the ingredients you'll need to make a whole supper, portioned just right, along with a detailed recipe created by a chef. The ingredients and clear descriptions for the week's meals are included in a box that you get every week. Dishes and ingredients with a seasonal flair keep things fresh and interesting.

The time-consuming and ineffective job of going to the grocery store to buy ingredients—which is typically done in unexpected proportions that result in waste—can be greatly reduced by using Plated. By using Plated, you may enjoy cooking and eating meals at home without needing to ruminate on what ingredients you need.

Now that we know a bit about the food delivery service, let's get into its founders and what they were doing before their Shark Tank appearance.

The Founders of Plated

Plated's founders were Nick Taranto and Josh Hix. Both have business school degrees from Harvard. Before starting Plated, Nick spent seven months working for Goldman Sachs, a job he disliked. John had been an engineer who eventually graduated from Harvard with a master's in business administration. Before helping to launch Plated, he started several other businesses.

Source: CNBC

They rarely had the opportunity to make healthy meals because of their prior professions, and microwave cooking did not provide fresh and exciting food. To counter this issue and gap in the market  Plated was created. For their website, the two paid $10 to register a web domain. Customers may order pre-packaged ingredients and recipes from the business. The idea, meanwhile, did not immediately catch on. The couple was in danger of becoming bankrupt since they had spent all of their money. The pair confessed that they had few repeat clients and blamed this on the initial products.

Within the first few months, Plated rose to prominence, and Nick and Josh made the decision to build warehouses on the east coast to accommodate demand. They were able to raise money at a reasonably high valuation for a startup because of their quick expansion and well-established business plan. The Shark Tank chance provided a catalyst for Plated to jump into the deep end when it sought to develop its local food service to a bigger audience. The company's co-founders, Nick Taranto and Josh Hix gave the sharks a concise business plan with strong financials. But the lure had to have more flavor than simply any takeaway or another uninteresting recipe to convince them to bite.

Let's take a look at how the pitch went in the next section.

Plated's Shark Tank Pitch

On Shark Tank, Nick and Josh asked for a $500,000 investment in exchange for a 4% ownership in Plated. They provided context for how people like high-quality meals but that it may be expensive, time-consuming, and difficult to put good food on the table.

They provided information on how their service, Plated, provides the customer with the ingredients and a recipe card so they may make a portion of wholesome food.

They also outlined wastage and overheads, as well as the problems food retailers are facing and how their business models overcome them by only buying what is necessary and throwing less than 1% of the food. They continued to describe how their brand is growing quickly each month and that they have amassed $3,000,000 at a post-monetary valuation of $9,500,000.

The majority of the Sharks were interested in the pitch's conclusion, but Mark was the only one to make an offer. He was considering investing but wanted to see how the business would expand. Josh claimed that since clients are still utilizing the product and their subscription service is expanding, they don't require additional employees to grow that aspect of their company significantly. Despite wanting consultancy shares and impressing Nick and Josh, Mark offered them $500,000 for 5.6 percent. Josh and Nick debated going out to discuss the company. After a brief discussion inside, Josh and Nick agreed to the terms, and Mark said he knew he had put money into some smart folks with excellent ideas.

The deal with Mark first fell through since Plated thought their company's worth had improved after Shark Tank and wanted a higher valuation than Mark offered. Mark, on the contrary, was adamant about sticking with his plan. Despite the agreement falling through, Plated kept growing, as shown on Shark Tank and opened numerous more stores across the country. However, in order to maintain this growth, they decided to reinvest all profits back into the company, which required capital expenditure. But the story didn't end there with their Shark Tank experience.

Later Nick ran into Kevin, a Shark, and told him that the deal with Mark had fallen through. But he amazed Kevin by showcasing their advancement since Shark Tank and their amazing business strategy. He then asked Kevin whether he wanted to make an investment right away. After some deliberation, Kevin decided to invest. Kevin eventually paid Nick and Josh a visit at Plated's headquarters, where they described some of the challenges they were seeing with their expansion, such as a break-in that resulted in $100,000 worth of food being stolen.

Additionally, a new warehouse was opened. Kevin advised Nick and Josh to fly down to the launch of the new Chicago warehouse to make sure everything went as planned since he felt they hadn't prepared enough to handle the logistics that were essential to their business strategy. With Kevin's advice, they could efficiently open their new facility.

Update on Plated and its Founders in 2023

Since then, according to Kevin, they have faced extra logistical difficulties that he wishes they had been aware of before making decisions, but they have overcome them and are on schedule to sell nearly $100 million in the coming year! After appearing on Shark Tank, Plated was acquired by Albertsons for $300 million in 2017. In 2019, Albertsons discontinued the membership service with the intention of integrating it with their meal delivery service.

In certain grocery stores, Albertsons started selling Plated meal packages in 2020. When Plated made an appearance on Shark Tank, it was valued at $12.5 million. Unfortuntaely, Plated is no longer in operation as of 2023.

Where is Nick currently at? In December 2019, he launched a new business called HOP WTR, according to his LinkedIn profile. Josh, on the other hand, is a co-founder of Season Health, a brand-new business that "connects members with nutritious meal ideas and grocery selections" to support those with chronic illnesses.

Have a business idea in mind? Here's how you too can get started

Step 1: 🛒Setup your Ecommerce Store

For the second half of 2022, retail eCommerce sales in the US alone totaled about $257 billion. This is an increase of 2.7% compared to the previous quarter. The most effective marketing tool you will ever have is your eCommerce website.

  1. For instance, with effective SEO, your eCommerce marketplace will show up in the top SERP results. Additionally, social media platforms will give you a venue to interact with and gain your clients' confidence through ratings and feedback.
  2. So where do you start? If you take a quick look at the Shark Tank contestants, you’ll get a straightforward solution- Shopify! This article highlights Shopify’s stronghold on the eCommerce sector, with 11 out of 13 brands choosing Shopify as their preferred platform to sell. Moreover, several popular Shark Tank brands like Bombas, Buttercloth, and more sell their products on Shopify.

Step 2: 💌 Start Sending Newsletters

Global email user numbers were projected to reach 4.3 billion in 2022. In 2025, this number is projected to increase to 4.6 billion, accounting for more than half of the projected global population.

Additionally, this Forbes article highlighted the impact email marketing had in the lives of successful Shark Tank contestants.

They found that email is the preferred medium for communication for 72 percent of buyers over any other platform. You can access an incredible customer base through email, and the best way to do it for your business is to invest in a solution that helps you create captivating content. If you’re looking for solutions to try out, these are among the best in the email marketing industry:

1) Awesome Send

Awesome Send is designed to empower ecommerce firms to attract and retain consumers, with a plethora of high-converting emails templates. Awesome Send also offers a robust Shopify integration that helps you connect information between your online store and email strategy seamlessly. Awesome Send's solution is accessible to all at a $39 flat with all features for users worldwide.

2) GetResponse

Get Response includes a good amount of tools that can boost your sales, like sales tracking, empty cart campaigns, and integrations with marketplaces like Magento and Shopify. GetResponse Free offers a free plan. But it has a monthly email send cap of 2500 newsletters for individuals with fewer than 500 subscribers. However, if you want to use capabilities like marketing automation or e-commerce features, things can get pricey very quickly.

Step 3: ⚡Grow your audience on social media

According to the most recent social media figures, there will be 4.59 billion social media users globally in 2022, and this number will only increase over the following several years (Statista, 2022). That currently represents around 57.5% of the world's population. Social media is the cornerstone of every successful marketing campaign in current times.

A wonderful example of an organization that has built its brand on the foundation of an effective social media approach is Grace & Lace from Shark Tank Season 5. When the entrepreneurs initially entered the tank, they asserted that their DTC site accounted for 90% of their more than $800k in revenues and that they hadn't yet spent a single penny on marketing. The business's socks profited from having over 34k incredibly engaged Facebook followers on top of being a popular pin on Pinterest.

Social media is about interacting and engaging; it's about establishing and sustaining relationships and using those interactions to promote your professional aspirations. And having genuine conversations is the sole strategy to do that.

You must be willing to pay attention, genuinely listen to what your community has to say and create consistent, high-quality content. So how can you do that with several competitors vying for the same success? Invest in a social media management platform!

1)    Awesome Social

With Awesome Social, your go-to social media scheduler, you can publish to all platforms simultaneously, share your content ideas with your team, manage numerous accounts from a single window, and seamlessly organize social media posts. Awesome Social is ideal for people seeking straightforward social media management features and offers four flexible pricing plans that start at $16 which you can choose from according to your unique needs.

What happened to spoonful of comfort after Shark Tank

2)    Sprout Social

Sprout Social is another great social media management app, however it functions more like a suite of tools for managing social media. You can manage your social media scheduling, inbox, mentions, and analytics with this web and mobile application. Sprout Social is a strong, comprehensive solution with a tonne of capabilities for the sophisticated social media marketer. However, its $249 introductory price may not be ideal for small businesses or independent owners who cannot make full use of its complex capabilities.