CEO James Martin of Copa Di Vino first appeared on Shark Tank to promote his wine-on-the-go glass. Although he didn’t get any investment on his business from the sharks, Copa Di Vino is running successfully with an estimated revenue of $67.0 million!
Copa Di Vino Produces Premium Wine by the Glass
James Martin came up with the idea of wine by the glass on a bullet train through the south of France. He and his wife thought that wine in a glass could reduce the carbon waste that is created from bottling wine. One year later, Martin got the technology to his hometown of The Dalles, Oregon.
Copa Di Vino was started seven years ago by James and Molli Martin, who “perfected the technology for above-premium-level wine, to be filled directly into a single-serve plastic contoured cup.” The Martins own two other wineries.
Since he is so passionate about wine, he came up with Copa Di Vino, which means “cup of wine” in Italian. It is a sealed, single serve, ready-to-drink wine in a glass that you can carry anywhere! So, you don’t need to carry a wine bottle, a corkscrew, or a glass!
However, Martin realized that his idea was not as easy as it seemed. So, he formed a partnership with inventor and wine bottler, Pascal Carvin.
Pascal offered the technology and Marine ensured that the U.S. launch would be a success. Their two years of hard work resulted in the huge success that is Copa Di Vino.
The company offers different types of features for the wine glass:
- Splash Cap: Wine won’t spill while carrying the glass.
- Ergonomic Shape: The hourglass shape makes drinking wine even more fun.
- Freshness Seal: Ensures that the wine stays fresh for more than a year.
All the glasses offered by the company are recyclable. Copa Di Vino offers several types of wine, including Pinot Grigio, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Moscato, Merlot, White Zinfandel, and Riesling.
Copa Di Vino containers are also made of 100% recyclable plastic. Carrying wine at stadiums, golf courses, camping grounds, beaches, or picnics has now become convenient and easy!
The company is located at 901 East 2nd Street in The Dalles, Oregon.
Copa Di Vino on Shark Tank
James Martin has appeared twice on Shark Tank. And reportedly, he was one of the show’s “most disliked” entrepreneurs ever!
He left an especially bad taste in the mouth of one of the sharks, Kevin O’Leary. In fact, he said in an interview that whenever he hears the name Copa Di Vino, it’s “an arrow to my heart, the pain I suffer when I hear that name.” He further explained that whatever Martin was doing, he could make it twice the size.
James Martin and his family struggled for several years before their business made a profit. When he learned about the opportunity of appearing on Shark Tank, he jumped at it to get potential investors and expertise.
At that time, the Martin family had just started the company and needed cash. So, on the show, Martin demanded $600,000 in exchange for 30% of his business.
At first, O’Leary expressed interest in the idea, but he wanted Martin “to separate the patent for the container from the process of bottling the wine.” However, Martin was adamant and called the wine glass “special sauce.”
He ended up refusing all the offers and walked off the show!
Shark Barbara Corcoran described Martin as arrogant and explained that all the sharks on the show were giving him good suggestions. Then, everyone on Shark Tank began disliking him.
Martin claims that after the episode aired, he started getting calls with several offers to invest in his firm.
James Martin on Shark Tank the Second Time
Considering Martin’s overnight success, the show’s producers asked him to be on the show again. However, it didn’t make a difference the second time around because he and the sharks were stuck on the same point. In fact, he may have made a worse impression on them the second time around!
Mark Cuban said, “He was the first gold digger that we ever had. It was so obvious and that was when I said I’m out, this makes no sense.” He came back with the intent to flaunt the success of Copa Di Vino, and when the sharks began making offers this time around, Martin simply smiled and sipped his wine. It infuriated all of the sharks to no end, and Mark Cuban even retracted his offer!
And the sharks don’t regret passing on Copa Di Vino. They agreed it was better for their sanity that they let him walk.
So, Martin walked away again without any investment in his product. However, his appearance on the show did do well for his business.
He explained that the first time he went on the show, Copa Di Vino generated around $500,000 in revenue. And in one year, sales went from $600,000 to $5.0 million!
The company reportedly generated around $25.0 million in revenue in 2014, and $12.0 million in sales in 2016.
As of 2017, it was reported that Copa Di Vino sold around 38 million cups of wine in places like local convenience stores, supermarket chains, hotels, and at sporting events!
Copa Di Vino now also sells variety packs, beach coolers, T-shirts, and outdoor patio bars.
Copa Di Vino Appeared on “20/20” Shark Tank: The Road to $100 Million
In 2017, Copa Di Vino and the Martin family appeared on “20/20” Shark Tank: The Road to $100 Million. Martin and his wife discussed their success story and spoke about their vision to produce Oregon wines.
Molli and James Martin hail from families who made The Dalles their home for seven generations now. So, they have kept their family and business roots in the Columbia Gorge.
The Martins have been the second largest wine producer for the past three years. They make wine at their historical Sunshine Mills headquarters in The Dalles, which is currently under renovations.
The Urban Renewal program gave a $500,000 loan for Sunshine Mill’s renovation project.
As of 2014, Copa Di Vino has expanded to 150 employees, and the company is very much active on social media, including platforms like Instagram and Facebook.
Now, Copa Di Vino’s revenue is estimated at $67.0 million. We only wonder if any of the sharks are secretly kicking themselves for not jumping on the Copa bandwagon!