For years, people have been using dull and not-so-fresh air fresheners in their cars. Ride FRSH provides new and unique scents for car owners on a subscription-based model. Founders Donovan and Trey Brown entered the Tank and got a deal with Barbara Corcoran. As of 2023, Ride FRSH is worth $2 million.
About the Founders
Donovan and Trey Brown are brothers hailing from Los Angeles, California. Trey has a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a focus on marketing from Howard University. He also studied Innovation and tech commercialization at USC Marshall School of Business.
After graduating and taking on several internships, Donovan worked in the social media departments of companies like Muse Communications, Resolution Media, and Blavity Inc. He and Trey also founded the Wemojis Mobile App, the first emoji keyboard for people of colour.
Founding the Company
While hanging in their apartment with friends, Donovan and Trey wondered if the air freshener business was a good idea. They soon realized there was just one company dominating the market, and their designs were boring.
The Brown brothers wanted to make things fresh. So, they sketched fashionable designs and experimented with new scents, such as wood grain, jasmine, ocean breeze, and leather. They also made designs based on NBA teams.
Ride FRSH was founded in 2017 and started selling direct to consumers using a subscription service. The model worked as the startup made $1.1 million in sales in three years.
Shark Tank Appearance
The brothers wanted to scale their business and lower their customer acquisition costs. They appeared on season 14 of Shark Tank, seeking $200,000 for a 5% equity stake.
The duo gave a lively presentation and handed out samples, Mark Cuban received a Golden State Warriors air freshener. The team had recently defeated the Dallas Mavericks in the playoffs, and the billionaire didn’t take the joke well. He quickly dropped out, Cuban’s petty reaction got a lot of criticism online.
Despite the setback the other Sharks were impressed with their sales. Barbara Corcoran was very interested and offered $200,000 for 20%, and the founders accepted. Before leaving, the guys apologised to Cuban as he didn’t say a word during negotiations.
After Shark Tank
The episode only aired in November 2022 but so far the Ride FRSH is thriving from the boost in orders from the show. Apart from NBA teams, Ride FRSH has also partnered with Nickelodeon and are waiting to close a distribution deal with AutoZone.
If the deal closes, AutoZone will buy $2.1 million worth of air fresheners and sell them at 2,000 of their locations. You can purchase their products on RideFRSH.com and Target. The subscription prices range from $5 to $7.25 per month. They also sell a special ‘Shark Tank’ bundle package where you can buy a pack of 10 for $28.99.
Ride FRSH currently has more than 10,000 active subscribers, and online reviews have been mostly positive. If the deal with Barbara Corcoran closes, the company’s valuation of $2 million is expected to grow. The business is on track to make $700,000 in revenue for 2022.