For those who have not heard about Coolest cooler yet, I am about to give a little summary. It is one of the biggest projects on Kickstarter: it is a cooler filled with all the optional that everyone could desire. It has a blender, a USB charger, a portable speaker, a ceramic knife, a cutting board and even more !
Having a look at the prom video, Coolest may seem the perfect product to launch on Kickstarter. It is original, practical and smart. Unfortunately, after reaching the threshold of 13 million dollars and having promised to all the backers a free Coolest, its creator, Ryan Grepper, was forced to ask the same backers a further funding of 97 $ per backer in order to keep the promise. But what happened ?
Right now the product is available on Amazon at the price of 399,99$. That $399.99 price point is important — when Coolest Cooler was launched on Kickstarter, it costed between $165 and $225. “Unfortunately, we didn’t set the pledge levels high enough to cover the final quality of the Coolest Cooler,” Grepper wrote in an update available only to backers. Meanwhile, a blender motor strike in China apparently drove up manufacturing costs of the cooler and pushed back its delivery date.
A really distressing situation, worsened even more by backers’ threatening letters that Grepper and his partners are receiving. Susan Tower, the company’s marketing director, told in an interview on Motherboard: “I got doxxed by a backer and my phone has been blowing up. I do think some of the reaction is beyond the pale. We’ve been physically threatened and abused and yesterday some backer threatened Ryan’s family.”
These are terrifying statements. That some of the backers are angry, it is comprehensible -after all, the campaign has been a disaster since its beginning-, what is not comprehensible are all these threats for a cooler ! It is bloodcurdling to hear about it. Meanwhile, Grepper is desperately trying to keep his promise by selling on Amazon the biggest amount of Coolest possible. Needless to say, the situation is not that rosy. However, we send our best wishes to Grepper and his partners.