Whatever Happened To BoxLock Smart Padlock For Package Deliveries After Shark Tank Season 10?
Jul 21, 2023
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Brad Ruffkess is the founder and CEO of BoxLock; a company focused on making shipping more reliable and secure. In season 10 of "Shark Tank," Ruffkess introduced his original product, the BoxLock, to potential investors. BoxLock is a smart padlock device designed to prevent package theft from front porches and other commercial locations. According to SafeWise, as many as 260 million packages were stolen from doorsteps in 2022. Each lock has an integrated scanner that works with UPS, USPS, FedEx, Amazon, and other companies to scan package barcodes. The lock uses WiFi to read and track packages, and when it scans the barcode for an incoming item, the lock opens so the package can be placed inside a receptacle.
BoxLock is intended to save time for delivery drivers and ensure packages make it to their rightful owners. Once they're home, residents can use their smartphone or send a scannable barcode to another person to unlock the box. While the BoxLock product itself seemed like a good idea, the sharks weren't impressed by Ruffkess' business model. In the end, he left "Shark Tank" without having gained any investors. However, the reality TV show was only the beginning of this smart security company. Since leaving the tank, Ruffkesss has turned BoxLock into the world's leading supply chain access control platform. Here's what you need to know about Ruffkess' journey after "Shark Tank" and the other innovative projects on his resume.
Brad Ruffkess was the very first contestant on "Shark Tank's" season 10 premiere (via Hulu). The sharks were initially stunned by his request for $1 million for 5% equity, but Ruffkess felt confident in his product and networking. Jamie Siminoff, a previous "Shark Tank" contestant and former CEO of Ring security cameras, especially seemed like someone who could understand the value of front door security. "We know it's a win for anyone who buys anything and anyone who ships anything," Ruffkess stated in the episode, "We know Boxlock will be a win for you too."
While they appreciated the care and craftsmanship of the product, the sharks didn't like that delivery drivers would have to be trained on how to use it. One by one, they declared themselves "out" on the investment opportunity — that is, except for one shark, Lori Greiner. "[Package theft] is a big problem. This is a really good solution," Greiner said, tossing the ball into Ruffkess' court. She offered a $1 million loan in exchange for 8% interest plus a royalty in the company. After some further negotiations between Ruffkess, Greiner, and Siminoff, Greiner eventually decided to pull out of the investment. Defeated, Ruffkess walked out of the "Shark Tank" but still kept his head held high. "Jamie came in here with a big ask, and he didn't get it," Ruffkess said, "Look where he stands now."
What happened to BoxLock and Brad Ruffkess after being turned down on "Shark Tank"? Despite the initial disappointment, Brad Ruffkess continued with his dream for BoxLock. By March 2020, Ruffkess was able to gain $4.5 million in investments for the company, plus its initial $45,000 on Kickstarter. While Ring inventor Jamie Siminoff didn't choose to invest in BoxLock, many others from the security and shipping industries did, including executives from DHL, Microsoft, Amazon, and Pitney Bowes. There has also been an outpouring of support from individuals who love Ruffkess' idea. "As a former Amazon Prime driver I know this will work," one commenter wrote on the company's Instagram page, "I would feel more comfortable placing a package in a Box Lock than placing it in hidden bushes."
Having finally gained some financial support for BoxLock, Ruffkess was able to grow and expand the company and its range of products. Now, BoxLock offers new and improved smart devices, a camera lock, laboratory receptacle boxes, and integration services. Direct-to-consumer shipping wasn't quite ready when BoxLock debuted on "Shark Tank," but now products can be purchased directly from their website or through Amazon, where the original design costs $129 and holds a 3.0-star rating.
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Yes, BoxLock is still very much in business, even after being initially turned down on "Shark Tank"! Before gaining investors from DHL, Microsoft, Amazon, Pitney Bowes, and other companies, BoxLock started by raising a measly $45,000 on Kickstarter. Now the company's net worth hovers around $17 million, and its annual revenue reached about $13 million in 2021. In addition to financial success, BoxLock has done an excellent job integrating with existing systems, and it became the first package anti-theft solution to be approved by the United States Postal Service in 2018.
The company has also seen growth in terms of its product range and people. The original padlock design has seen a few new generations, including the Padlock 2Z and Padlock 2G. BoxLock also launched a twisting Cam Lock model and a compatible lab box, perfect for storing sensitive biological specimens. Since its humble beginnings in 2017, about 25 people are now employed at BoxLock as of 2023.
Boxlock's solutions now extend far beyond secure shipping and delivery for private residents. BoxLock has also been busy forming business alliances and partnerships with companies like PPG (via X). As a company, they're becoming increasingly popular in the construction, distribution, and supply chain industries, but they're also making waves in the medical sphere.
In the future, BoxLock will very likely continue working with medical suppliers and laboratory specimens. Because these materials are often fragile, perishable, or time-sensitive, it's very important to have accurate tracking and secure receiving practices. "BoxLock is tackling preanalytical errors for leading laboratories with a new comprehensive specimen logistics solution," the company recently shared on X, formerly known as Twitter. As absentee voting becomes a more accessible reality, BoxLock is also working to make mail-in ballot boxes more secure. With their Election Integrity Solution, ballots can be locked securely and tracked via GPS once they're picked up. Voters and officials will also have access to status updates on their ballots.