Here's What Happened To Define Bottle After Shark Tank

When 15-year-old Carter Kostler presented his Define Bottle to the investor panel on "Shark Tank," it appeared that the young entrepreneur may have created a hot product (via Shark Tank Blog). His invention was functional yet simple — a water bottle with a compartment to infuse the flavors of fresh fruit. The inspiration for this idea came from his mother, who would prepare fresh fruit in the mornings to make spa water in a pitcher (via Entrepreneur). The problem, however, was portability. Kostler solved this by designing a water bottle that contained two chambers separated by a filter, allowing the consumer to take sips without the obstacle of fruit chunks floating to the top of the spout.

Kostler intended to market the product to kids in order to help get people to drink more water instead of soda (via Shark Tank Blog). People love trying out different flavor combinations to infuse water with and it's a great way to stay hydrated. So, with portability and hydration at the forefront of Kostler's product, the high schooler presented it to the Sharks in 2014, during the fifth season of "Shark Tank."

Define Bottle's appearance on Shark Tank was pivotal

Shark Tank Success reports that the young entrepreneur did his research right and impressed the Sharks with his pitch. The Sharks in this episode were Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O'Leary, Lori Greiner, and Mark Cuban. Kostler asked them for a $100,000 investment in exchange for a 20% equity stake in the product. By the time he appeared on the show, the Define Bottle had an initial valuation of $500,000. Kostler had also made $65,000 in the first four months of selling the bottle. His product had even been featured in a farmer's market hosted by Whole Foods after cold calling the manager.

But negotiations took a sudden turn after the sharks learned that Kostler's supportive parents had taken out a $300,000 home mortgage to help their child finance his business venture. Ultimately, Kostler failed to secure a deal with any of the investors. However, the setback didn't stop the young entrepreneur, who found another avenue to make the Define Bottle work.

After Shark Tank, Kostler made more successful cold calls

After losing his investment opportunity on "Shark Tank," Kostler didn't give up, per Shark Tank Success. Despite not receiving a deal, Kostler's appearance on the show naturally exposed thousands of viewers to his invention. As a result, the Define Bottle made more than $250,000 after the episode aired. Following this success, Kostler began cold-calling several companies and got the bottle into regular inventory at Target and Dick's Sporting Goods. Define Bottle even worked with Dick's Sporting Goods and Carrie Underwood's former yoga brand, CALIA, to release a collaboration bottle. Thankfully, Kostler was able to pay his parents back for their mortgage. By 2015, his company was projected to generate $2 million in sales.

However, according to Shark Tank Blog, Kostler decided to pull the plug on his business in 2016 and now serves in the U.S. Marines Corps. Nowadays, Define Bottle is not officially sold online any longer. It looks like Kostler doesn't plan to bring the creation out of retirement anytime soon, as an article by 2paragraphs suggests.

What's to come for Carter Kostler?

According to his X account, Kostler debuted a sister company to Define Bottle, Mason Infuser, in 2017. The website 2paragraphs reports Mason Infuser was the result of a Kickstarter campaign. Currently, the Mason Infuser website, which was linked on his X, formerly known as Twitter, announcement, is down. As for the original website for Define Bottle, it has a new owner and is completely repurposed.

In 2016, Kostler graduated from Parris Island and became a marine, where he served in the Amphibious Assault Vehicle Fleet (via Shark Tank Blog). He discussed his decision to join the Marine Corps, his search for a greater purpose in life, and his openness to future business endeavors, whether they be related to water bottles or not, in a 2017 YouTube interview.

While Kostler said in the 2017 interview that he loves entrepreneurship and values his experience creating Define Bottle, he's ready to explore new ventures — even if in the corporate world. "I definitely want to move on to more projects. Maybe work with a company, see what I can contribute, see what I have to learn. I'd absolutely love to just continue running a business, being part of a business, maybe dipping my hands in a bunch of different projects," Kostler said (per YouTube).