Where Is Define Bottle From Shark Tank Today?

One of the easiest ways to make your water more exciting is to infuse it. Plus, adding fruit to your water will totally benefit your body. The only problem is, or was, you're then left with a bunch of fruit chunks rising to the mouthpiece. There's gotta be a better way! That's exactly what one teenager named Carter Kostler thought back in the early 2010s, according to Entrepreneur Magazine. Inspired by his mother's homemade "spa water," he sketched up a design for Define Bottle, a product that holds the fruit at the bottom of the container while still allowing it to infuse the liquid. It also allows you to take that infusion on the go. After going through the patent process and kickstarting his nascent company, Kostler decided to turn to Shark Tank for support (via Hulu).

Appearing as a 15-year-old during a "young entrepreneur" episode of the show, Kostler asked for $100,000 in exchange for 20% equity in his business. The Sharks were impressed by his maturity and inventiveness, but the fact that Kostler's parents took out a mortgage to fund the project raised alarm bells. Furthermore, retailers weren't reordering supplies yet, online conversions were low, and the infusion bottle market was crowded. Only one Shark — Robert Herjavec — was willing to make an offer: $100,000 for 40% equity. It was too high of an ask for Kostler and his parents to accept; they thought Define Bottle was worth more than that. No deal was reached.

Did Define Bottle get a bump from Shark Tank?

One instance of rejection doesn't necessarily mean failure. A few months later, Carter Kostler spoke to the Virginian-Pilot and gave an update on Define Bottle. "The decision to go on 'Shark Tank' was also a big risk and we turned them down at first," he revealed. "It is a huge commitment in time [and] money, and a big emotional risk, as well, with no guarantee that your segment will ever air on TV." In the end, though, the appearance did help the business out. "Before 'Shark Tank,' we only had one person outside the family assisting us. Since 'Shark Tank,' we outsourced shipping to Fulfilltopia, a local fulfillment company, and brought on two more people," Kostler explained. Additionally, "Once 'Shark Tank' aired, we sold more than $225,000 in that one weekend," he said, mentioning that they had recently become profitable. At that point in time, Kostler was also receiving messages daily from people who claimed that his product helped them quit sugary drinks like soda.

The next year, Kostler appeared on Beyond the Tank, a Shark Tank spin-off show where former contestants give updates on their companies (via YouTube). He admitted that Shark Tank's rejection shocked and devastated him. Fortunately, though, Kostler persevered and was able to pay off his parents' mortgage with Define Bottle's success. Plus, he was able to secure a partnership with Carrie Underwood and even began prototyping a new mason jar infuser design. Things were looking up!

Is Define Bottle still infused with success?

News about Define Bottle in recent years is rather limited. Carter Kostler's Linkedin profile mentions Define Bottle, but also reveals that he has since gone on to become a United States Marine, which is still his present-day occupation. Meanwhile, a look at Kostler's Twitter page shows that the most recent bit of Define Bottle news came in 2017 when the first batch of Mason Infusers arrived at his door. What happened after that seems to be a bit of a mystery. The Define Bottle website is now an interior design blog owned by someone named Rachel Tate, and the product that the site is named after is nowhere to be seen.

It can be difficult as a teenager to get people to take you seriously. Even if Define Bottle didn't last, Kostler still showed adults that he meant business. Certainly, the idea that even kids can be entrepreneurs is something worth getting invested in.