Brian Powers has raised tens of millions of dollars for his startup. Proving many investors wrong about putting their capital to work during the chaos of 2020, and their beliefs about the potential for startups which are big on sustainability and high priced ticket items.
During our interview on the Dealmakers Show Powers shared his journey from meeting his cofounders to NASA inspired coolers. Plus his experience with going international, and tips on staying focused on executing well.
Brian Powers was born in Washington but ended up growing up in Maryland. His parents were both big on education, with multiple degrees. His father works in public policy for the University of Maryland and his mother is a civil rights lawyer.
Brain pretty much grew up on campus. Yet, as far back as he can remember he always wanted to be an entrepreneur.
As early as kindergarten he was flexing his entrepreneurial powers by selling tickets on a rocket ship to the moon. By middle school, he was in a band, and hustling doing lawn work and hauling junk. Today, he is taking on a $10B a year industry.
In Search Of Startup Ideas
At TemperPack Brian has two co-founders. One of them he has been friends with since middle school. They were in the band together and worked on many small entrepreneurial endeavors.
For a while their paths diverged for a while at school, they frequently debated business ideas. Always searching for something that hadn’t been done. Not all were viable, like the Gatorade flavored mouthguard.
James went to study engineering in Canada, while Brian dove into finance at Penn.
One day James showed up at Brian’s apartment with a big tub of white powder. It was aerogel. The lightest weight insulating material. At the time it was being used in NASA spacesuits.
They started brainstorming the applications for it. They were so excited that they couldn’t sleep.
They came up with the concept of a high-end cooler. One that would cost several hundred dollars. They got into the Wharton Business Plan Competition.
They didn’t win. No one believed that people would spend that much on coolers.
While their idea that consumers would pay for such a product has since been proven right, they’ve expanded into many more pressing uses for their technology.
They discovered one of the biggest uses and demands for this type of solution was in pharmaceutical cold chain packaging and transportation of temperature-sensitive medical materials.
Creating A Scalable Business Rooted In Sustainability
Everyone was aware that the existing model was inefficient. Styrofoam was really the only thing available. Yet, it was very bulky. It, along with traditional plastic, was also very bad for the environment.
We are all aware of the growing problems of pollution and even in the middle of the COVID pandemic climate change is still a big thing in people’s minds.
See How I Can Help You With Your Fundraising Efforts
- Fundraising Process : get guidance from A to Z.
- Materials : our team creates epic pitch decks and financial models
- Investor Access : connect with the right investors for your business and close them