Grammy-winning rapper and serial entrepreneur Chamillionaire lent his name and funds to Siena Sauce, the gourmet condiment company founded by 16-year-old Tyla-Simone Crayton. The origins of Crayton’s, which now offers three sauces (Hot, Spicy and Lemon-Peppery) began when she was only 8 years old, creating the Tangy flavor for mimic her favorite spot from the Brooklyn wing, because it had closed.
Chamillionaire’s investment, which was less than $ 10,000, could be considered a pittance. However, his co-signature is probably worth more than the amount he invested. He has already invested in startups like Uber alternative Lyft (which IPO but flopped), Maker studio digital media network (acquired by disney) the darling police state Ring (bought out by Amazon) and autonomous driving startup Cruise (bought out by General Motors). Yahoo! Finance in May 2019.
Sienna Sauce is a business run by a young woman of color. Despite its modest fundraising, it’s far from a lemonade stand operation; the company is already present in more than 50 points of sale and has already achieved a turnover of approximately $ 190,000, according to Republic, a public investment platform. Chamillionaire invested in Sienna Sauce because it “supports startups that have domain expertise, resilience and a track record that I think could potentially lead to success,” according to its investor page on Republic.
By donating an undisclosed small amount to Sienna Sauce, Chamillionaire hopefully avoids a WeWork-like situation, where investors have pounced on themselves trying to get a piece of a brilliant tech company that ended up being a very sexy real estate company. By investing a modest sum, Chamillionaire seems to admit that a monstrous one-time investment in Sienna Sauce could spark the idea that the company is in fact a tech platform that just happens to be in the sauce business, dooming it to the failure with an accompanying TV show and book about her disappearance.
Unlike WeWork, Crayton’s product is innovative because it capitalizes on a number of trends: it’s gluten-free, free of high fructose corn syrup, and recreates the best part of chicken wings: the gravy. As noted comedian and Chappelle’s show co-creator Neal Brennan, meat is often a “sauce + seasoning delivery system. âCompanies like Beyond Meats and Impossible Foods keep trying to recreate the flavor and texture of dead flesh, so it makes sense for a company to innovate on accessories.
Chamillionaire knows something Silicon Valley still doesn’t understand. A billion dollars is not cool. A sustainable and healthy condiment business mobilizing small amounts of capital as needed? That’s what’s really cool.