‘Coolest Cooler,’ One of the Biggest Kickstarters of All Time, Is in Hot Water
The makers of the Coolest Cooler appear to be in some hot water. And though people who backed the project on Kickstarter are being asked to chill, it’s hard to cool down when the cooler you paid $185 for still hasn’t arrived.
For those of you who don’t know what the Coolest Cooler is – or have forgotten about it, which is fair being that its Kickstarter campaign ended way back in 2014 – the ultimate bells-and-whistles cooler, complete with things like a Bluetooth speaker, USB charger and full-on built-in blender, is one of the most successful Kickstarter campaigns of all-time. According to their page, the beverage holder raised $13,285,226 from a massive 62,642 backers. But those numbers actually seem small compared to the now 12,000 plus comments that have been left on the site, many by people wondering why their coolers, which were supposed to be delivered back in February, still haven’t shown up.
Though patience with missed deadlines often seems to be the norm nowadays from crowdfunded projects, what really pissed people off is when the Coolest Cooler suddenly showed up for retail sale on Amazon even though the product still hadn’t shipped to many of its backers.
Ryan Grepper, the man behind the cooler (who we interviewed back when the cooler was originally looking for funding), immediately went on the defensive in a long, somewhat rambling post on Kickstarter, covering everything from the reason behind the most recent shipping delays (a strike at the blender motor factory) to the reason why some of the Amazon coolers shipped before backers got theirs (“these are two different situations”) to even explaining the point of Kickstarter (it’s “about supporting an idea that needs to go be developed and created, and the understanding has always been that it’s a process”).
To be fair, the Amazon coolers were selling at a premium price of $500, profits Grepper says are subsidizing his other expenses. Still, a lot of people are probably left wondering, How often would I really use a blender on the beach anyway?