Coolest Cooler announced on Thursday they had restarted the production line for Kickstarter supporters who signed up during their crowdfunding campaign. Coolest is the 2nd largest Kickstarter project ever after Pebble Watch, having raised more than $13 million almost two years ago. While some of the 60 thousand plus backers have received their coolers, many pledges remain unfilled. Production issues arose as Coolest Cooler founder Ryan Grepper revealed they had underestimated the actual cost to produce a Coolest Cooler, and they were shy of funds.
Grepper recently offered backers still in the queue the opportunity to pay a bit more to receive their cooler by July. A sufficient quantity signed up for the offer making it feasible for more coolers to ship. Grepper stated in an update;
“Good news!! Thanks to the generosity of over 10,000 backers who pledged their additional support last week, I’m so excited to share that the Coolest Cooler production line is back up and running! This means those 10k backers are guaranteed to receive their Coolest by July 4th this summer!
For those who didn’t participate last week, please know that our sole objective is to get every Reward delivered to all remaining backers as quickly as possible.”
Grepper expects the first production units to begin shipping from the factor next Thursday. Coolest has continued to retail coolers at a higher price-point on Amazon.
The challenges of the Coolest Cooler campaign are not unique in the rewards-based crowdfunding space. While little data exists on how many campaigns fail to deliver all rewards, many large campaigns have been unable to adhere to their commitments to individuals that contributed money to support a young company or project. Too frequently creators will just walk away from a project that lacked sufficient funding, managerial skill or both. While many early supporters of the Coolest Cooler are frustrated with the extensive delays at least that have backed an individual determined to keep his promise.
During one update, Grepper also stated he was in the process of raising additional capital to build upon the popularity of the product. It will be interesting to hear if and when Coolest Cooler raised debt or equity capital to build a bigger company.
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