There are many who can empathize with Andy Sperry when he ran out of printer ink in the middle of a big job. While the rest of us grumble and head out to the office supply store, Andy had his “Aha!” moment. He founded Ink Flip that saves customers money and time while helping out the environment. Instead of buying the ink cartridge, you rent it. When it’s empty, you return it in the stamped, self-addressed Ink Flip box—no more ending up in a landfill. After refilling the empty ink cartridge, it is sent back to you, guaranteeing that you always have an extra ink cartridge at hand.
On the Ink Flip website, customers could select a printer manufacturer, printer model or cartridge model, and place an order. Andy needs an investment to get the word out about Ink Flip and needs the expertise of a shark to get his business off the ground. He had only made $10,000 in the six months he had been in business.
Andy did not get a deal. The sharks felt the business was too new and Andy knew too little about business in general. After the show, Andy advised anyone thinking of going on Shark Tank to make sure they are completely prepared for the sharks’ questions. Ink Flip didn’t last much longer. There is no website, and the last post on Facebook was in 2011. Andy is now COO of a large company that supplies subscription-based ecommerce stores.
Ink Flip is no longer in business.