Carson Grill and his father, Jason Grill, were all set to do some touch-up painting in their home. However, when they opened up the cans of paint that had been stored for just such an occasion, they discovered the paint had rusted and clumped up due to improper storage. Some of the paint even gave off a disgusting smell, indicating that it was, in fact, spoiled—just like food gone bad in the back of the refrigerator!
Both of them realized there must be a better and more reliable way to store the leftover paint from home improvement projects for those inevitable times when touch up is needed. A born entrepreneur, Carson, just a young teenager at the time, turned a frustrating experience into a practical solution. With his father’s support and help, he designed the Touch Up Cup, an easy-to-hold container for paint with a built-in steel spiral. The stored paint is easily mixed by this spiral by shaking the cup. During the development process, they learned that if sealed correctly, as it is in the Touch Up Cup, latex paint can last up to 10 years and oil-based paint up to 15 years.
Carson also came up with an innovative idea for storing foods such as donuts, bagels and muffins. He created air-tight, waterproof containers that hold six of each, keeping them fresh for several days. They are made of BPA-free plastic, and are microwave and dishwasher safe.
The father-son duo greatly enjoyed pitching their products to the Sharks, but Jason gives most of the credit to his son, Carson, now a 15-year old high school freshman. In an October 7, 2020 news story on Cincinnati, Ohio station, Spectrum News1, Jason admitted to Katie Kapusta he was pretty nervous, even “freaking out” when appearing before the Sharks, but Carson just walked in with confidence and did a great job. Carson has been the major force behind the development of the Touch Up Cup and often the one staying up late to discuss production issues with their manufacturer in China and figuring out logistics and patents. Their company, DZ Innovations Inc, filed for a patent on September 30, 2020.
Carson gives his father credit, too, saying he doesn’t have concerns about his age because his dad his backing him up. Father and son both say no matter what the outcome of their Shark Tank appearance, the experience brought them closer together, and that is the best benefit of all!