Crazy product snags $100,000
A CHICKEN nugget crossed with a doughnut.
It's something that should have happened a long time ago. Thankfully, someone has invented it - and he's picked up a $100,000 deal on Shark Tank to bring it to the world.
Melbourne man Crag Carrick and his wife Rachel Dutton entered Tuesday night's episode seeking $100,000 for a 20 per cent stake in their new business, Donug.
"I'm not changing the world with this product," he said. "I'm giving something that's fun, it's easy to understand, people get it straight away."
While the Donug is a combination of doughnut and chicken nugget, he said there was "nothing sweet about it". "All savoury. It's 98 per cent chicken that has our unique and top-secret spice mix," he said.
"It's got then a cornflake and panko crumb and three different sauces - a cheesy dijon bechamel, a golden Japanese curry and mozzarella, a hot chilli, or you can have it just on its own."
Mr Carrick said every day he went on social media and saw "some crazy new food trend coming up in Japan or LA". "I want this to be the crazy new food trend coming out of Melbourne," he said.
RedBalloon founder Naomi Simson was impressed, saying she "wouldn't eat a chicken nugget" but would "definitely eat that". "People are looking for a full meal, and I think it is a whole meal," she said. "It's quite substantial."
While the Sharks were impressed with the taste, they were more impressed with the numbers. Donugs sell for $9 but cost $2.20 to make, with that figure to rise to $4 at the manufacturing stage. Mr Carrick said he had only done two events so far but had already made $8000 in profit.
Mr Carrick wanted the investment to "take it to the next level". "I want to go to the manufacturing stage," he said.
"I've been working with a manufacturer so far trying to get a prototype together. $100,000 basically kickstarts the process. $50,000 gets me my first 10,000 Donugs made, $40,000 is for a proper event set-up, and the $10,000 is for insurance and branding."
Internet entrepreneur Steve Baxter loved the taste but had concerns about the viability of the business, saying it was a "very uncomplicated product". "You mince up some chicken, throw some spice in, shape it," he said.
Investor Andrew Banks also wasn't convinced. "I'm sitting here asking myself, is it franchise? Is it partly frozen cooked at home? The execution risk is huge," he said.
"There's a million moving parts to get this from being a nice brand to something that's a really big business. I wish you well, but I'm out."
Greencross founder Glen Richards said he had moved into the "wellness space" with his food investments. "If you'd come on with a vegan, paleo, organic, nut-free, sugar-free, savoury snack, I'd probably go with you," he said.
Boost Juice founder Janine Allis said while she thought they were "onto something", they hadn't "proven [their] tenacity", asking them to "please come back next year".
But to everyone's surprise, Naomi circled in. "I don't think you need to come back next year because I'm about to make you an offer," she said, countering with $100,000 for 25 per cent of the business.
The couple happily accepted. "It's about getting Donugs sold here at every sporting ground, every servo, every fish-and-chip shop," Mr Carrick said.
Shark Tank returns to Channel 10 on Tuesday 12 June at 8:30pm.