MinusCal’s founders went on Shark Tank with the hope of scoring a major sponsorship deal to take the weight-loss snack bar company to the next level. Instead, the disastrous appearance appears to have led an an abrupt end for the product’s presence online.
The company was featured on the premiere episode of Season 11, airing back in September 2019. By the time the episode re-aired in July 2020, it appears that MinusCal’s online presence is entirely gone. As the Shark Tank product blog noted, MinusCal founder Barrett Jacques created the snack bar with a proprietary ingredient known as Choleve, made from all-natural fermented tea extracts. Jacques said that this blocked the absorption of fat in the body and helped increase weight loss or prevent weight gain.
Jacques and business associate Crom Carmichael had a difficult time getting these claims past the Shark Tank investors, however. They appeared to struggle in backing up the claims of the product — including the confusing name, as the pair said that the product didn’t actually reduce calories despite signage claiming that people could lose weight by eating them — leading Mark Cuban to cut them off and say they were “investing in air.” The other sharks backed out as well during the argumentative pitch, painting the product as misleading. They ended up leaving the show with no offers for investments.
The MinusCal products have become almost impossible to find after the Shark Tank episode. The company’s website, which has been listed on ABC’s capsule describing the episode, now directs to a message from Shopify that the site has not been completed. No products are listed there, and a link to Amazon also included on ABC shows no results for MinusCal products.
The company’s Instagram page, once active with pictures of products and even images promoting the Shark Tank appearances, has been dormant for close to nine months. Questions from fans about whether the products are still for sale went unanswered.
While it’s not clear if the Shark Tank appearance brought an end to MinusCal or if the product is still living on in some other way, the fitness bars and the controversial pitch have definitely left an impression on the show’s fans. The product also drew a sharp pushback from fans at the time, with many calling it one of the weakest business pitches on Shark Tank, especially given Cuban’s tendency to invest in similar companies that have a stronger pitch.