Coolest Cooler asks backers to hand over even more cash to speed up shipping time

By midian182
Apr 14, 2016
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  1. Kickstarter can be a wonderful thing. It’s brought us many great products that may not have got off the ground if it wasn’t for their successful crowdfunding campaigns. But there are times when Kickerstarters fail, and it can all get very messy.

    Much like the Zano mini-drone disaster – a project that went so badly wrong Kickstarter hired an investigative journalist to look into it – the Coolest Cooler has also lurched from one crisis to another. And now those behind the campaign have managed to annoy backers even more by requesting extra money for a product they’ve already paid for.

    The Coolest Cooler completed its campaign way back in August 2014. It had gained an incredible $13.3 million from 62,642 backers in just 52 days, making it the second most-funded project in Kickstarter history.

    Part of what made the Cooler so popular was its built-in blender, removable waterproof Bluetooth speaker, and USB charger, turning it into a so-called “portable party disguised as a cooler.”

    The cooler was supposed to ship in February 2015, but this never came to be. Delivery did begin in July 2015, but a strike by the factory that manufactures the motor set production behind again.

    In an effort to “keep production up and running,” Coolest put some of the remaning coolers on Amazon for the full $400 retail price, which upset the two-thirds of backers who still haven’t received their coolers.

    To make matters even worse for those who are still waiting for their product, Coolest is now offering them the chance to pay an extra $97 for “expedited shipping.” The company says it guarantees those who do opt in will receive the coolers by July; those who don’t will be probably have to wait quite a while before they see them.

    According to a report from Motherboard, Coolest is relying on Amazon sales to fund its remaining Kickstarter orders. Coolest says it can ship one new cooler “for every 2 – 4 retail sales,” which means it would need to sell 144,000 coolers at full price to deliver on its initial promise, which is more Coolest Coolers than have been produced to date.

    "In a perfect world we wouldn’t rely on new sales to help fund the delivery of backer rewards, but in a perfect world you’d already have your Coolest," said creator Ryan Grepper.

    Permalink to story.

  2. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 2,525   +828

    So at what point can this be called extortion?
  3. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,136   +480

    It's definitely poor business planning.

    Anyways, the reviews on Amazon all agree that the darn thing is heavy (40lbs empty.) Also, it does not do well off road, I.e. sand, mud, etc.
  4. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 2,525   +828

    Im honestly surprised, because it doesn't seem particularly difficult to pull this product off. the hardest part would be water-resisting the separate electronics. but what do I know? Probably trying to cut corners with $$ in their eyes.
  5. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,617   +492

    This is why you do not fall into the Kickstarter death pit of "who the hell knows when you'll get your product"... Just be a normal person and wait till you can pick one up at your local Home Depot when they have a half off sale.
  6. dms96960

    dms96960 TS Addict Posts: 253   +28

    I wonder what the "executives" of this venture have paid themselves?
  7. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,729   +1,093

    I'm surprised they haven't sold their idea to a company with some experience making coolers. This idea could take off if they could actually produce them.

    What's strange is that Amazon say's its 'In Stock' and you can even ask for next day shipping. But at $400... yikes!
  8. SailorKing

    SailorKing TS Rookie

    I was a original backer and I have received mine last October. The problem I think is the never ending features they jammed into this thing. It is a pretty crazy cooler and the quality and engineering in every aspect to make it all fit and work as well as last long under battery power does set it aside from anything ever done. But they need better leadership and a better product manger that knows when to say know to the idea team. It was a year late for mine and I was the first batch and then instead of focusing on manufacturing they let that go to hell where they had to change mid stride. It was then they felt in order to save the sinking ship and make true to their original backers they allowed it to be resold and a lot of backers units went to Amazon to fulfill orders which pissed us all off.

    If they just said no to about 6 additional features I think they would of been okay. Hell they took NASA's approach to everything including the blades for the blender lol. What was the story about NASA spending ages and millions of dollars on a ink pen that worked in space when the Russians just used a pencil? Yeah it was like that in R&D. but hey I got mine! haha
  9. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,408   +461

    To me at least, it was the complexity of the idea that probably would've never sell to "basic" cooler manufacturers, they are good at that and they would have to invent a new line for production and get into an uncharted market, so that would've meant studies and lot's of time in research to try and use the same lines, hiring more people, engineering, and so on and forth in order to sell it.

    Edit: And no, it's uncool to do what they are doing.

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