SACRAMENTO – Local entrepreneur Chris Johnson is cooking up some serious support. Johnson’s appearance on ABC’s “Shark Tank” earned him a $300,000 package that will surely raise the profile of his invention that is taking the nation by a storm — the Rapid Ramen Cooker for Ramen noodles.
At a viewing party held at Cafeteria L in downtown Sacramento, it was revealed that the show’s creator, billionaire Mark Cuban — owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks — loaned Johnson $150,000 and $150,000 for 15 percent of Johnson’s company.
Johnson, a graduate from UC Davis, invented the Rapid Ramen Cooker, which is a tray that cooks the noodles in a microwave in less than four minutes. Johnson’s invention is already a hit around Sacramento and is sold in Walmart, Safeway and Raley’s stores.
“Shark Tank” invites promising entrepreneurs on the show to pitch their products to other successful investors. The additional finances from Cuban will allow Johnson to expand his operations to other markets. Johnson said he intends to do demonstrations of the Rapid Ramen Cooker on college campuses.
During the show, Johnson was offered various business deals from the investors for Rapid Ramen Cooker. He was shown seeking advice from his “mentor,” Nehemiah Corporation CEO Scott Syphax on how to proceed with the negotiations.
At the viewing party, Johnson, 34, was accompanied by his wife, Shawna Johnson, their children and more than 100 other supporters. In addition, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, UFC mix-martial artist Urijah Faber, Syphax, and a few of Johnson’s colleagues from the Nehemiah Emerging Leaders Program were also in attendance.