Young entrepreneur eyes booze caps for next project

Reimnitz-2col-c

Nathan Reimnitz

Reimnitz seeks funding
to launch Shotcaps

After tasting success right out of high school, entrepreneur Nathan Reimnitz did what any kid might have done.

He enjoyed himself.

Reimnitz had a winner with SyncMyAd, an online syndication service landlords could use to get apartment listings on multiple websites.

Now he’s pouring his entrepreneurial spirit into launching Shotcaps – a liquor bottle cap and shot glass in one. But his previous venture capital partner is sitting this one out, and Reimnitz didn’t keep much cash from SyncMyAd, so he’s trying to raise at least $10,000 through crowdfunding.

“The problem is, when I want to manufacture this product, I need like $100,000,” said the 24-year-old Burnsville resident.  “I don’t have anything close to that. When I did the real estate project, I was drawing a pretty good check out of that. And being a young buck, I bought a sports car, went to Twins games, and just kind of wasted the money. I didn’t make very good choices when I had the success, and man, I’m kicking myself now because it would have been nice just to get this going out of my own pocket.”

A 2007 graduate of Farmington High School, Reimnitz was a teenage skateboarder who saved paychecks from a summer job at Valleyfair to start his first business, Ello Skateboards. He still has the businesses, which employs his skills as a graphic artist to create graphic designs for the bottoms of skateboards.

“I graduated with distinction,” Reimnitz said. “I had academic honors. I had a 3.9 GPA. I took the PSEO courses at Normandale (Community College), but never did any college after graduation in 2007. That’s when I got into the real estate syndication services.”

Inspired by a chapter in the book “Freakonomics” that he said questions whether the interests of real estate agents and their clients are aligned, Reimnitz envisioned creating a “CarSoup for houses.”

His original Web business was aimed at the for-sale-by-owner market, but he and partner Dustin Griess changed the model at the recommendation of Space Center Ventures, which sunk $10,000 into the project, Reimnitz said.

Rebranded as SyncMyAd and serving mostly landlords – along with a few single-family sellers – the business thrived for a while but eventually lost its originality, as well as a key contract with an apartment guide company that found another vendor to give it the same capabilities, Reimnitz said.

“We were kind of ahead of the curve, but I don’t know that there’s a huge business there” now, said Reimnitz, who spent two years on the venture.

Reimnitz said he later developed a reggae music-streaming website, Jam’s Space, in collaboration with Jim Dupont of Farmington, who came up with the idea.

Shotcaps is an idea Reimnitz hatched before he was old enough to drink. Shotcaps come in three sizes: a 1.5-ounce  single shot, a 3-ounce double shot and a 4-ounce mixed shot.

Shotcaps are unbreakable acrylic, and the shot glasses inside the caps are made of “non-flavor-transfer” plastic that keeps plastic aftertaste at bay, according to Reimnitz, who said the design was done by California-based Traser Design.

He’s seeking $10,000 through the crowdfunding service Indiegogo. Reimnitz said that would allow him to manufacture a few thousand Shotcaps of each size. Once he has $100,000 in purchase orders (Reimnitz is targeting liquor stores) Wells Fargo Bank has agreed to invest in the manufacturing, he said.

“I guess they’re kind of aimed at the college kids,” he said of Shotcaps. “They seem to be the ones doing the heaviest drinking and always bringing their bottles from party to party to party. The product is a traditional shot glass and a bottle cap just combined.”

While working on his latest venture Reimnitz is also earning a steady paycheck as a web designer for Viking Magazine in Burnsville, a magazine sales company.

“I don’t have an employee mindset,” Reimnitz said. “I like being an entrepreneur and developing my own products, and hopefully someday making a little more money than I can sitting in a cube.”

Information on Shotcaps is at shotcaps.com. The funding campaign opened July 31 and concludes Sept. 14 at 11:59 p.m.

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