BrilliantPad creator Alan Cook is a talented entrepreneur. He not only invented the device, but he got it funded on IndieGoGo AND delivered his promised product on time. That's an unfortunately rare occurrence these days, but he did it. He got his concept built with over $110,000 in backing.
The BrilliantPad is “The World's First Self-Cleaning Puppy Pad & Dog Potty.” If you ever had a puppy, you know they poop on the floor. To house break them, you use newspaper and they quickly learn to poop there before they know enough to ask to go outside. The BrilliantPad replaces the newspaper. It's great for puppy training or for small dogs that are used to relieving themselves on a pad. It's “not recommended for adult dogs that do not currently use pads.”
The dog poops on the pad which absorbs the moisture from pee and dries out the poop. Then it rolls the waste into a sealed plastic tube which you conveniently toss away. It eliminates odors, keeps germs to a minimum, and practically automates cleaning up after your dog. Think of a vacuüm sealing food storage machine dogs poop on and you'll get the basic idea.
Each roll of disposable media and sealers has 27 pads. After it's full, toss it and put in a new one. The rolling mechanism can be put on a timer or on manual use. A refill roll is $64. The unit itself is $159. Mr Cook probably needs a Shark to help him with inventory. Will a Shark want to seal a deal for this business?
My Take on BrilliantPad
My city is jam packed with little dogs. The older folks have them as companions and they take them everywhere. They also spend ridiculous money on them. One guy I fish with belongs to a group of small dog owners (he has two) that has birthday parties for the dogs and other events. They recently had a Halloween party for their dogs – his came in third place with a Spiderman costume!
While puppy owners may want the convenience of mess free waste clean-up, it's the small dog market that will drive sales for this product. There are 27.5 million small dogs in the USA alone – up 15 million from the year 2000. I know a lot of people with small dogs and they spoil them rotten. Dropping money on a BrilliantPad might mean a few less doggie sweaters for the petite pooches, but it's better than poop! My dog is gone after 16 wonderful years and I am in no rush to replace her, so I'm probably not a buyer, but I am definitely in.
Will Sharks Think this Product is Brilliant?
Pet products have limited success in the Tank. BrilliantPad is a cool gadget, but is it “investable?” Barbara invested in Ry's Ruffery a few seasons back, but she's the only regular Shark on the panel who has a pet related business in their Shark Tank portfolio. That doesn't bode well for Mr. Cook.
What he has going for him is proof of concept, sales, and a huge potential market. Ultimately, this is a gadget. It's a gadget for dogs, but a gadget nonetheless. If Barbara doesn't like it, it will be a tough sell to Mark, Lori and Kevin. A-Rod is the wild card, but I don't think he plays it on this business.