There’s a problem that’s secretly infesting humanity – people procrastinating on the toilet, or as entrepreneurs Adam and Katie Stephey like to call them, “poo-crastinators.” To solve this problem they invented the Toilet Timer under their company, Katamco. It’s a gag product with real benefits. They pitched their product on Shark Tank and got a deal with Mark Cuban. As of 2023, Toilet Timer is worth $2 million.
About the Founders
Adam and Katie Stephey are a husband-and-wife duo that reside in Normal, Illinois. Adam has a degree in German language and literature from Truman State University, and Katie completed general studies at Harding University.
While in Germany, Adam started his professional career as an area director at Young Life. He moved to the States and became a reading facilitator at Heartland Community College. In 2014, he worked as a production and distribution manager at Gun Storage Solutions, while Katie was the marketing VP.
Founding the Company
Adam loved 3D drafting and founded Katamco in 2015 with his wife. Together, they developed products to help with everyday problems. One of their problems as a couple was Adam spending too much time in the bathroom.
One day, he designed a 3D model for the Toilet Timer and printed it out. The aspiring businessman hesitated on releasing it at first but then invested $300 of his own money to start.
The Stephey’s launched their product in 2017 after raising $20,000 on Kickstarter. In 2019, the company made $294,000 in sales. Although it went viral as a fun present, the five-minute sand timer also has gut health benefits, according to experts.
Shark Tank Appearance
In 2020, Adam and Katie Stephey were looking to raise money for inventory to prepare for a seasonal bump in orders from Christmas. The couple signed up for season 12 on Shark Tank, seeking $200,000 for 10%.
After their introduction, the Shark investors were convinced that they had nothing but a gag gift. Kevin O’Leary got a huge return from another gag product, Potato Parcel, was open to investing but disliked the valuation.
Toilet Timer had incredible sales, but the majority of Sharks didn’t believe it was a viable business in the long term. Fortunately, Mark Cuban offered $200,000 for 25% and the founders quickly accepted the deal.
After Shark Tank
After Shark Tank aired, Toilet Timer received 5,000 orders! In an interview with BizJournals.com, Adam was expecting the deal to close with Cuban in early 2021. It appears that the deal was never finalized and Cuban hasn’t mentioned Toilet Timer in any interviews.
The product remains a popular present for dads around Father’s Day and Christmas. Katamco also released new designs of the timer along with a bathroom book and greeting card. They even have a Donald Trump toilet timer. You can purchase all of these on Amazon, Walmart, and their company website, Katamco.com.
The classic version of the product has a 4.6-star rating from 16,396 customer reviews on Amazon. The company hasn’t released any recent sales figures but it’s valued at around $2 million. Adam is still inventing new products and isn’t working full-time on Toilet Timer. He’s currently working on a new venture, called 1UPcard, a line of cleaning products for retro video games and consoles.