Posts by Joanna Weinstein
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch1 day ago
Alex Furmansky's little sister, Michelle, would come home from school with creative artwork. The family would display it on the fridge for a few days, but soon the drawings wound up in the attic. Meanwhile, Michelle would be entertained by her collection of stuffed animals.
"I dreamed of a way of combining her original art with her love for plush toys," said Furmansky. So after toying with the idea for several months, he founded the start-up, Budsies.
Watch Alex Furmansky show off his custom toys in just 60 seconds to a Power Pitch panel with former toy retail executive, Rachel Jarrett, President of K'Nex Brands, Michael Araten, and co-founder and COO of Expansion VC, Ryan Melohn. Will the panelists be buddy-buddy with Budsies or call it child's play?
Paper to Plush
Furmansky is no toymaker. But he said he's partnered with some top designers to create an online destination for designing custom plush toys. And he's made it pretty easy. Customers just snap a picture of the artwork and email firstname.lastname@example.org. Next, a team of designers, cutters, and seamstresses coordinate to complete the final Budsies plush toy.
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch22 days ago
One man says he has the answer to making sure you get the all the daily vitamin intake you need without ever taking a pill again.
Ray Doustdar is the CEO and founder of Buiced Inc., which produces a liquid multi-vitamin which he claims gives your body 100 percent daily value of vitamins from in a single 1-ounce dosage.
"I'm just trying to help people get their vitamins on a daily basis," said the founder.
Doustdar had just 60 seconds to Power Pitch his big idea to a panel of experts with Dr. David Katz, founding director at Yale University's Prevention Research Center; Richard Demb, CEO of Abe's Market; and Nikhil Kalghatgi, a partner at Vast Ventures.
Will his pitch be "Buiced" enough to get our panelists going? Click the video above to find out.
A hard pill to swallow
In 2011, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that more of half of U.S. adults use dietary supplements--including multivitamins, minerals and herbs. Doustdar was one of these multivitamin takers, but said he never enjoyed swallowing those "horse pills."
"I would get nauseated each and every time that I would take pill form vitamins," he said.
One start-up is trying to make a major splash in the sharing economy this summer. But instead of renting out houses and cars—this company is hitting the water.
“There's not a boater on the planet today that gets to use their boat as often as they'd like,” Aaron Hall told CNBC. Hall is on a mission to change this with his start-up, Boatbound, a company he says will make boating more accessible and more affordable.
Hall pitched his big idea to Power Pitch panelists Yao Huang, managing partner of The Hatchery, Kanyi Maqubela, venture partner at Collaborative Fund and Peter Isler, an internationally renowned sailor and American Sailing Association board member. Will his pitch sail the high seas with this panel or be dead in the water? Click the video above to find out.
Hall, a life-long boater, had trouble renting a boat during a family vacation. The marina said all its rental boats were booked. “Yet everywhere I looked around me, there were hundreds of boats sitting unused. I immediately saw an opportunity to solve a problem,” Hall told CNBC.
Designing a new home or workspace can be challenging and expensive. Yet one start-up is on a mission to change that, and its founders say they’ve been profitable from day one.
“I think everyone really wants to love their home, but a lot of people don’t feel like they are at a place in their life where they can actually have access to an interior designer,” said Noa Santos.
Santos and his friend Will Nathan are the co-founders of Homepolish.com, which they say makes the luxury of having a personal interior designer attainable on any budget.
Watch Santos and Nathan model their 60-second pitch to a panel with home design experts Ryan Serhant, Nest Seekers International’s vice president and managing director and a co-star on Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listing New York;” Colin Cowie, luxury design consultant and celebrity wedding planner; and Paul Hsiao, general partner at Canvas Venture Fund. The segment was hosted by Mandy Drury.
CNBC viewers also got a chance to vote during the segment. Did Santos and Nathan pitch a perfect finish, or did the panelists and viewers suggest a remodel? Click the video above to see the results!
One dog owner says he can now keep tabs on his four-legged friend at all times just by checking his smartphone.
“I've been a dog owner most of my life, and we just always wondered what would happen if our dog got out. We didn’t feel like there was a device out there that did everything needed to be done to protect dogs,” Scott Neuberger told CNBC.
Neuberger is now the CEO of Tagg, a new tracking device he says can protect pets at all times, and also keep fido in shape.
CNBC gave Neuberger 60 seconds to bark his big idea to a Power Pitch panel with dog training expert Andrea Arden, founder of Andrea Arden Dog Training, Wendy Diamond, Animal Fair magazine’s editor-in-chief, and Rebeca Kaden, a principal at Maveron Venture Capital Firm. The segment is hosted by CNBC’s Mandy Drury.
CNBC viewers also got a chance to vote during the segment. Tagg’s pitch received 9,000 votes. Did our audience show some puppy love for this pitch, or growl at the idea? Click the video above to see the results!
Man’s best friend
“Pets are part of our families. We treat them just like our children,” Scott Neuberger told CNBC.
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch2 mths ago
This former DJ is mixing his passion for music, lights and biking to produce a new hit that promotes safety for pedestrians and bikers.
“I wanted to create a safety product that appeals to today’s generation. Not only does the product have to have functionality, it needs to be able to relate to society’s personality and culture,” said Vincent Pilot Ng, founder of Halo Belt Company.
CNBC gave Pilot Ng just 60 seconds to Power Pitch his bright idea to a bike-riding panel with Andrew Bernstein, Bicycling Magazine’s marketing manager; Matt Compton, venture capitalist and REI Board member; and Eurie Kim, principal at Forerunner Ventures. The segment was hosted by CNBC’s Mandy Drury.
Click the video to see whether our panelists will ride on with—or without—the Halo Belt.
Lighting the way
Vincent Pilot Ng has deejayed all over the world, controlling the light boards at nightclubs from California to the UK. But when he wasn’t spinning tracks, he was often cycling in the Bay Area. And at 25, Pilot Ng created the Halo Belt, named after an angel’s halo.
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch3 mths ago
There’s a start-up on the road this summer that’s trying to shed light on fuel costs for trucks and buses. The key— the sun.
“Every hour, the sun produces enough energy to power the entire world for one year. Most of that energy goes untapped,” Jeff Flath, founder of eNow Energy Solutions, told CNBC. “But eNow's found a way, through our proprietary technology, to capture that energy for the transportation industry.”
Watch Flath give his solar-powered Power Pitch in just 60 seconds to Sonal Shah, Senior Fellow at the Case Foundation, Nat Burgess, President of the Corum Group, and CNBC host Mandy Drury. Will the panelists be in on his sun-kissed start-up or rain on this founder’s parade? Click the video to find out.
Under the sun
Before starting his own company, Jeff Flath served as the president of manufacturing company Cooley Group. It was there that he developed Ricoh’s (RICO) $3 million solar-powered billboard still on display in New York’s Times Square. The 6,000-square-foot billboard is the first and only solar-powered billboard and it produces about 6,000 watts of power.
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch3 mths ago
One recent MBA graduate is making a fashion statement in the denim industry—premium jeans at half the price. And he wants to take on major name brands like Levi’s, J Crew and Seven7 Jeans.
“We know what makes great denim … and we offer it directly to the consumer,” said Alejandro Chahin, founder of Mott & Bow.
CNBC gave Chahin 60 seconds to take the runway and model his big idea to “Power Pitch” panelists Carson Kressley, celebrity stylist and fashion designer; Divya Gugnani, vice president of QVC’s digital innovation and founder of fashion start-up Send the Trend; and CNBC host and dreaded jeans shopper Dominic Chu. Watch now to see if Chahin’s designer denim will be a good fit for the panelists.
“Denim has been a passion of mine since I was little,” Chahin told CNBC.
At just 13, Chahin worked alongside his father who founded Intermoda, a denim manufacturing company that’s been around for more than 30 years. He helped his father in every aspect of the trade, from counting inventory to sewing, drying, scraping and washing jeans.
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch4 mths ago
The founders of “Guitar Hero” are back in the spotlight with a new start-up. Their goal this time: make everyone sing like a rock star.
John Devecka and business partner, Eric Berkowitz, are the co-founders of “Singtrix,” a product they say is reinventing karaoke.
“Now I can pull off ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ on national TV along with anyone else,” Devecka said.
CNBC gave the duo just 60 seconds to take the stage and pitch to a panel of some big acts in the music industry: DJ Skee, Skeematic Inc. CEO and entertainer; Ryan Schinman, Platinum Rye Entertainment CEO and CNBC host and karaoke aficionado Mandy Drury.
Will the founders hit the perfect pitch or go off-key? Watch the video above to find out.
Taking the stage
Devecka and Berkowitz have been inventing and designing games for music lovers for almost two decades. Their biggest hit to date, “Guitar Hero,” sold more than 35 million games. In the U.S. “Guitar Hero” sales reached $2.47 billion at the end of 2010, according to the NPD Group, a market research firm that tracks video game sales.
However, “Guitar Hero” only utilizes instruments. With Singtrix, singing will take the stage.
- Joanna Weinstein at Power Pitch4 mths ago
One mother says she's turning the nightmare of shopping for baby into a dream.
"We make it easy by showing them what their friends have already figured out," said Allyson Downey, founder of weeSpring.
CNBC gave Downey 60 seconds to pitch her brainchild to Deborah Jackson, founder and CEO of plumalley.co, Kent Bennett, a partner with Bessemer Ventures, and CNBC’S Mandy Drury. Watch now to see if she can convince YOU and the Power Pitch panel that weeSpring is a golden child in the start-up world.
From baby bump to business plan
Allyson Downey is mother to son, Logan Downey—with a daughter on the way, but the idea for her start-up was conceived in the store.
"I looked up at this 10-foot-tall wall of baby bottles and promptly had a meltdown," Downey told CNBC.