Husband & and wife duo Cole and Emily Williams made their big break with their company slice of sauce during the 12th season of Shark Tank. The Texas native couple pitched a business model comprised of a flavored sliced condiment called slice of sauce.
The product meant to defy the conventional use and form of different sauces entered the show with an initial ask of $200k for 10% equity. With slight modification, the duo landed a final deal with one of the sharks, Alex Rodriquez.
After the release of the episode in January 2021, the company found great success with a boost in sales. But, much has changed with Slice of Sauce since its initial fame & success.
With very little update and product placement, it’s challenging to understand where the company stands today. Let’s have a more detailed look into Slice of Sauce and its journey.
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What is Slice of Sauce?
Founded in the year 2016 by couple Cole and Emily, Slice of Sauce began its journey as a food & beverage services startup in Austin, Texas, U.S. The company’s primary product is just as the name suggests, a slice of sauce.
The company takes traditional bottle condiments and transforms them into mess-free slices as opposed to their original thick liquid form.
The product is known to be vegan, Non-GMO, HFCS, preservative, and gluten-free to prevent various health issues and provide a healthier alternative.
Slice of Sauce presents itself as a flavor-packed solution for soggy sandwiches by maintaining an overall tasty, clean and fresh profile. It is a compatible solution for various popular food items such as wraps, burgers, tacos, etc.
But how did the product come about? Slice of Sauce may have stumbled its way to the shark tank on purpose, but its initial creation resulted from an accident.
The sliced condiment was born during an accidental mashup of vegetables and natural ingredients in the kitchen of founders Cole and Emily.
A pack of Slice of Sauce comes with 8 sliced pieces, and although its form may look closer to bread, it is known to carry the authentic taste of the traditional sauce. As proudly declared by the company, Slice of Sauce is drip-free that does not ruin your clothes. Hence, the “mess-free” tag.
The shelf life of Slice of Sauce is 12 months, which is good enough for any long-term use. Moreover, the product does not have any sport-related issues, making it quite convenient for travel or office use as intended by the founders.
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|Slice of Sauce
|Cody and Emily Williams
|Dehydrated condiments packaged into convenient slices
|Investment Asking For
|$200k for 10%
|$200k as debt which turns to 20% equity with a 1.8 million sales milestone
|Season 12 Episode 10
Who is The Founder of Slice of Sauce?
Slice of Sauce is represented by founders Cole and Emily Williams. The founders are a husband & wife duo based in Austin, Texas, U.S.
The CEO and co-founder, Emily Williams, hails from Upper Peninsula, Michigan, and is a graduate of Michigan State University. Prior to Slice of Sauce, Emily was an employee at Frontrunner Inc, Oppenheimer & Co. for about 4 years.
Meanwhile, co-founder and husband Cole Williams is a graduate of Purchase College, SUNY, and was an employee at CW Fitness, SoulCycle for many years before Slice of Sauce.
Although from different occupational and educational backgrounds, the duo joined forces and worked tirelessly to raise some amount of money for launching the venture before appearing on Shark Tank.
The resilience and partnership of the couple/founders are one of the main reasons behind the company’s initial growth and success.
Although not much is known about the couple, Emily and Cole continue to work together as partners in both life and business.
Slice of Sauce Before Shark Tank
Prior to their appearance on Shark Tank, the founders carried out tons of research before fully cementing the company.
Founders Emily and Cole discovered that no such product was available at the time and decided to move forward with the product.
To facilitate their journey, the company initiated a Kickstarter campaign back in 2018 with the name “Bo’s Fine Foods” and raised $30k funding in just 4 days. The founders also managed to invest around $120k during the startup.
But how did the accidental nature of the product begin? Owing to her father’s background in food as a restauranteur in Michigan, Emily William created Slice of Sauce while helping her father out in the kitchen.
While braising vegetables for barbecue sauce, the discovery of unused yet nutrient-rich vegetable parts led to Emily mixing, grounding, and drying them together. This resulted in the development of a concentrated sheet.
Thus, with the help of her background in sales, supply chain, and finance, Emily began to envision a successful path for her small-scale company.
During the initial conception of the product, co-founder Emily shared the vision with her former work boss. Eventually, husband and future co-founder Cole Williams joined hands to ensure the successful growth of the unique business idea.
The condiment transformed edible sauce slices are made from high-quality California tomatoes. This unique form of sauce is the result of vine-ripened purée, cane sugar, onion, distilled vinegar, garlic powder, fruit pectin, and kosher salt.
Realizing the potential target of over 500 million BBQ sauce and ketchup users in the U.S alone, Slice of Sauce founders saw it as a perfect solution to soggy sandwiches and moved forward with their dream and mission.
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How Was The Shark Tank Pitch of Slice of Sauce?
Co-founders Emily and Cole Williams entered the tank with a fiery passion and vision to land a solid deal with the sharks. Sharing a close resemblance to fruit loops, the duo pitched a unique product, which was sliced sauces of well-loved condiments such as ketchup.
The product was presented as a slice of convenient sauce option that can be slipped between any food item without the sogginess or mess of bottled condiments. Emily and Cole Williams went seeking an investment of $200k for 10% equity.
Although an interesting pitch, Sharks Barbara Corcoran and Lori Greiner could not see the requirement for such a product.
The Sharks commented on why they should spend more money for 8 slices when almost two ketchup bottles go for the same price. For this reason, both sharks backed out.
Shark Kevin O’Leary, the self-proclaimed “Chef Wonderful,” decided to jump into the action and offered a deal. Kevin countered the original stake of $200k for 10% with $200k for 5% equity along with 10 cents royalty per unit until an amount of $700k is paid.
The offer, however, did not leave the founders of the sliced condiment thrilled. Emily and Cole tried once again to explain the features that make the product suitable such as its “mess-free” nature.
Interestingly enough, the “mess-free” tag finally gained the attention of Alex Rodriquez. The guest shark quickly presented an offer of $200k on contractual grounds.
Rodriquez’s offer suggested the deal be considered “dead” if the company failed to hit its projected sales number. The co-founders slightly tweaked the proposal and countered the deal with debt instead of a contract.
Emily and Cole’s final counteroffer to Rodriquez was for $200k as debt, which was later to be converted to 15% equity upon reaching $1.8 million in sales.
Make Cuban then jumped in to make a counteroffer but was blocked by guest shark Alex.
Pulling off a signature shark move, Alex Rodriquez threatened to take his offer away if the Slice of Sauce pitchers listened to the advances of the other shark. The founders decided not to risk it and sealed the partnership with Rodriquez’s final deal.
Final Deal: Guest shark Alex Rodriguez bags the deal for Slice of Sauce with a final offer of $200k investment as debt, which is converted to 20% equity once sales reach 1.8 million.
What Happened to Slice of Sauce After Shark Tank?
After the events of the show, which originally aired in January 2021, the company began to garner increased attention for its product.
The company gained tons of exposure, and the product was made available for pre-order through the Slice of Sauce website.
The company subsequently made new improvements, such as moving from plastic wrapping to a more low-impact option of recyclable and compostable materials.
But, perhaps the biggest change in the company is the absence of guest shark Alex Rodriquez.
The guest shark that made a counteroffer ($200k investment as debt, which is to be converted to 20% equity once sales reach 1.8 million) is no longer part of their journey as the deal was never closed and did not come fruition.
After the events of Shark Tank, the company also received negative reviews where users took to Twitter to criticize the price and actual value the product offers.
Hence, despite the initial uproar regarding the product, it has now subsided, and the presence of Slice of Sauce seems to be vanishing.
The problem is that the company has still not convinced a sufficient number of foodies to convert to sliced dry condiments.
Slice of Sauce Update
At the time of their appearance on Shark Tank, Slice of Sauce had a $2 million net worth (according to the founders). But unfortunately, today, very little information is known about the company’s earnings.
While the deal with closing shark Alex Rodriquez was never closed, Slice of Sauce initially managed to expand its online presence and create new flavors to keep the company afloat with its new set of customers.
Being a pre-revenue company, the product was yet to launch but was expected to complete around $1.8 million sales in the first year. However, Slice of Sauce did not exactly deliver up to its promise.
With a failed deal and huge competition in the condiment sector, the company slowly dissolved its presence. There have been no updates yet about the products being placed in retail grocery chains, and the company website is also not serviceable.
Hence, there is also very little way to contact the company regarding its product. The site does indicate that the company will be back soon, but its true nature remains unknown.
Is Slice of Sauce Still in Business?
Although no official reports or statements can be found on whether Slice of Sauce is closed or not, the company’s status has been quite blurry recently. As of late 2021, there have been no updates regarding the product and no order facility.
The company’s website is still not accepting orders, and its social media platform has been inactive since 2021. On the bright side, the website does display that Slice of Sauce is “coming to a grocery store near you.”
But, with no updates and statements, the company might be on the verge of closing off.