EASLEY—Easley resident Cheryl Rigdon recently did something most inventors only dream of doing. She pitched her idea to the “Sharks.”
Rigdon and her invention were featured on a recent episode of the popular ABC show “Shark Tank,” and she says the whole process has been somewhat of a whirlwind.
“It was a great experience,” said Rigdon “I saw that Shark Tank was casting for their next season so I applied. It was a long experience to get on the show. Even when I went out to LA, nothing was guaranteed, but everyone was great.”
Rigdon got the chance to show off her two new creations in front of a national audience.
“I’ve created two different tools. One is the ‘Spatty’ and the other is the ‘Spatty Daddy,’ ” said Rigdon. “The Spatty is for smaller containers like liquid foundations and face creams. The Spatty Daddy is for larger containers like lotions, ketchup, shampoo and conditioners.”
The inventor says the “Spatty” is designed to help consumers avoid wasting product.
“Consumer reports did a study that said there’s 17 to 25 percent of product left in containers when it’s no longer easy to get out,” said Rigdon. “This tool allows you to get pretty much 100 percent of your product out, and it saves you money. It will pay for itself in the first couple of uses.”
Rigdon says the idea for the product came at the spur of the moment.
“It was a Saturday night, and I was getting ready to go out with my husband and some friends,” said Rigdon. “I had been low on my makeup for a few days and everything was closed so I couldn’t go buy more. I tried several things around the house, but I couldn’t find anything that would get the product out, so I decided to make something for myself.”
Pitching the idea to the “Sharks” was nerve-racking, according to Rigdon.
“They were all great about it and they all liked the product,” said Rigdon. “One of the biggest things for them was how early in the process I was in. They knew I would need a lot of help getting started, and investors, most of the time, just want to invest their money. With me, it would be more of an investment of time.”
Although no one decided to invest, Rigdon says she has received help from the panel since the show concluded. The show also provided her with some new opportunities.
“It has been crazy,” said Rigdon. “I’ve gotten close to 1,000 emails from people who saw the show. It has been nothing but positive comments. I really haven’t heard much negative feedback at all. I’ve had more than 20 people offer to invest, but I’m trying to be smart and look into things.”
As for the next step in her endeavor, Rigdon says she is hoping to make some sales in her hometown.
“Right now, I’m working with United Tool and Mold in Easley,” said Rigdon. “They will be finished with the mold at the end of the month. I’m trying to get everything done locally.
Rigdon says she has also been invited to set up a booth at the Oscars in Los Angeles this February to promote her product. Currently, the Spatty is only available online, but Rigdon says she would like to sell her product in local stores eventually.