SPORTIECUPS was designed to harness America’s love of sports and to build a foundation for employment for Americans still able to dream the American Dream. Thrilled to have had the opportunity to sit down with Serial Entrepreneur and the inventor of SportieCups, James M. Crumb.
What is SportieCups and how did you come up with this idea?
James M. Crumb: SportieCup is a cup designed to support your favorite sports team. The Topper (lid) acts as the main feature of the product. It’s designed to be eye catching and to make a bold statement. Its molded out of plastic that simulates rubberlike to give the feel and look of the actual ball of your favorite sport. The 24 & 32-ounce cup is the body of the product and serves as the base for the topper (lid) and is highlighted by graphic action silhouettes printed with thermochromic capabilities developing from opaque into your favorite team’s colors when a cool or iced beverage is dispensed.
Born a serial entrepreneur there was a season in my life when I was physically at my lowest, however, I was maxing-out the spiritual faith Richter scale and my entrepreneurial rhythm, a vision of invention/innovation dominated my spirit. The invention of the SportieCup came to focus. Why a sports related beverage container? Sports were a part of my life since youth. In my youth, I played everything that used a ball and continue as an avid sports fan. Being a lifelong entrepreneur and had/have owned several businesses, but I have always aspired/envisioned manufacturing and distributing my own brand of products to worldwide consumer markets.
What do you feel is the difference of SportieCups from other sports souvenirs in the marketplace today?
James M. Crumb: SportieCups stands alone in novelty/souvenir markets. I’m certain our lid/topper design concept displaying the simulated ball (feels like & looks like) of your favorite sports enhances the feeling of putting your hand on the game ball and action silhouettes on the cup base helps to achieve the feeling you’re seeing the players actually perform pro like moves at a game. So, you’ll drink your chilled water or favorite beverage of choice whether it’s morning, noon or night, with the action of the game at your fingertips. Whereas SportieCups lovers can go about a daily routine rocking their favorite sports team proudly supporting your team as true fan feeling energized for everyone to see. My experience is that fan’s sports representation of their favorite team often spurs the feeling of being a partner whether you’re a weekend warrior, extreme sports lover or just want to build a collection of memorabilia of your favorite team(s) and sports.
Why do you feel the need to put this product out to market?
James M. Crumb: As I mentioned I’ve always envisioned manufacturing/distributing my own brand of products. My experience has taught that College and Professional Sporting fans are enthusiast and sporting events are guaranteed attendance/participation and endless food & beverage consumption. Sports are a great way to plan a fun group game day and for fans to dawn their favorite team representation. SportieCups accomplishment. With an expanded objective to cater a unique and specific product to engage fans via eCommerce, Quick Service Restaurants allows us to bridge availability that enhance these memories and experience just as our offering availability when attending a professional or college sporting event with an affordable memorabilia sporting concessions cup. Cheering, SportieCups memorable and one-of-a-kind experiences achieve no fan is left behind.
SportieCups creation, USA manufacturing & distribution tugs on my heart strings on a more personal note is my “out of the ashes” driving commitment to “lift up the least of us” with employment and other opportunities, empowering women as partners in our executive level, general workplace and communities we footprint. SportieCups to market, is a parallel symbol as the sports it represents strengthening and supporting communities. While helping to enrich communities the we serve and prayerfully to make a positive impact in someone’s life.
So far, what challenges have you encountered launching this business and what have been your biggest wins?
James M. Crumb: When developing a vision (product) from mere sketches-to production prototypes-to-purchase orders-to-production/distribution it’s almost like having faith in a foreign land. Funding in new ventures is challenging because it’s either black or white when seeking finances outside of the corporation. But we’ve continued to invest in SportieCups, bold enough to go against the grain, taking the road less traveled instead of the well beaten path even when it wasn’t popular. I recently conveyed, I view life’s situations and experiences as seeing the “glass half full”, NOT half empty. Still pressing, I consciously try to learn at least a “mustard seed” more daily in regards to manufacturing and marketing SportieCups in already established target markets. It’s a continued effort, to combat being ‘unknown’ and those infamous questions how many have you sold, or simply who are you, what is your product and who sent you? Pulling back the veil so that you get a personal glimpse of me as an Inventor, Executive and SportieCups as a fan favorite. Positioning to launch SportieCups there were decisions that weren’t always right, and usually entailed trusting someone or services provided. Our big wins accomplished; administrative protection of our products, functioning production prototypes and successful market studies distributing sample volumes recognizing SportieCups as a fan favorite. Foremost, we are still in the game.
What advice would you give budding entrepreneurs when launching their own products?
James M. Crumb: Continue to smile, even when It’s hard. Prepare your mind to embrace everything your eyes will see and make today a great day. If onlookers knew where you came from they wouldn’t believe you. If they knew where you were going they wouldn’t believe you. The good news is it doesn’t matter what they believe. What matters most is what you believe. Laugh in the face of “no” when it’s contrary to your ideas, products, markets and leap before you look-that’s the sixth sense of successful Entrepreneurs. You have greatness inside of you along with a list of talents and abilities that you have yet to activate.
James M. Crumb/Inventor & Managing Director
Crumbs Ventures LLC