Plate Topper Shark Tank Update

Michael Tseng has a solution for year old problem of people losing their container lids and having to see their microwave be a mess. He walked in on the Shark Tank in season 4th of the series in 2012.

The sharks agreed this was the best product on the show. Michael Tseng went on the show offering 5% of the equity for $90,000. Let’s take a look at how it went for him.

Plate Topper at a glance:

  • It converts plates to food containers.
  • Founder: Michael Tseng
  • Asked For $90,000 for 5% at a $1.8 million valuation on Shark Tank.
  • Received $90,000 for 8% from Lori Greiner.
  • Buy on Amazon


What is a Plate Topper?

Plate Topper is an air-tight lid that is placed on the circular plate. The edges of the topper are made of silicone that creates an airtight seal so strong that it lifts the plate with it easily.

During the show, Michael demonstrated that to take off the lead you just simply have to lift the silicon rim. It came in four different designs “the original Plate Topper”, “Plate Topper mini” which is the smallest in size. “Plate Topper tall” is slightly taller in size, and “cake topper” for the cakes. The topper came with a handle and was easy to store and dishwasher safe.

Founders Story:

Michael Tseng has a degree in electrical and biochemical engineering from Princeton University and completed his medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco, and was about to start his practice as a physician before he came up with the idea for Plate Topper.

Michael had an idea for a plastic topper while he was away from his university in his hometown. He had an idea for a suction plate and then combined it with a microwave plate. Michael told the sharks that he had come up with the idea 7 years ago and had only launched himself in the business last year.

How was the Shark Tank Pitch?

Michael Tseng appeared on season 4 episode 8 of the Shark Tank. He demonstrated the product as he shows all the hassle a normal household goes through as he states “the plastic lids on container always go missing, and saran wrap is an inconvenient mess”. He further states that this leads to food splatters all over the microwave.

Michael introduces Plate Topper that “transforms your plates at home into airtight container”. The founder further places the lid over the plate he states “the airtight seal is so strong you can suspend a plate in mid-air”. The topper works on circular plates and even on your kitchen counter.

The toppers are microwave safe and were storage friendly as if could be kept inside each other saving space. Tseng offers the shark an investment of $90,000 for 5% of the equity of the shares but there was more. He states that if they invest in the company now they will as get a throw-in of three different designs for free.

Which he revealed to be Plate Topper mini, Plate Topper tall, and Cake Topper. Michael says that he wants the sharks on board to help him get his product in two of the biggest retail stores.

Mark Cuban wanted to know the best sales the company has had made in 12 months. Michael answers that they had made $1 million with the pre-orders; he further reveals that he had made that only in the last four months. Mark also states that he made $500,000 from that million.

Kevin O’Leary says he liked what mark was doing but he wasn’t even interested in the 5% equity instead mark offered $90,000 for 5% of the royalty. Kevin liked the product and was ready to market it himself. Michael liked the offer but he wanted to hear others.

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Lori wanted to know about the sales the first time on QVC. Michael says that they sold 6080 units, QVC has ordered $60,000 Plate Toppers the first time then they made an order of $ 1 million.

Lori offered $900,000 for 30% of the equity. Lori states that she had contact with the top retailer in the world she could help him get his product there.  Daymond states that Lori might not be a good partner for him since he was already on QVC.  Daymon John then offered him $1million for 25% of the equity. Michael rejects Kevin’s offer respectfully rejects it since there were other big offers on the table.

Daymond got frustrated with how slippery Michael was with decision-making. Lori wants to know what would happen if she rolled her offer back to $90, 000 for 5% since he was comfortable with that. Kevin reminds Michael that he was losing all the investors and should just take the offer.

 At this point, Daymond john realizes the Tseng has not yet revealed the actual valuation, Daymond threatened to walk off the stage as Michael continues to keep the number to himself. Kevin accuses him of bait-and-switch as he reveals he was going to offer $7500 for 5%. Frustrated, O’Leary states he might watch a guy with fantastic business walk away without investment.

Michael then wants to start bidding the highest cash offer to which sharks say it doesn’t work like that.  Michael stood there for almost 2 hours making it the longest pitch on that show. Lori finally offers him $90,000 for 8% of equity when Michael had no time left after a long exhale Michal finally accepted the offer.

What happened to Plate Topper after the Shark Tank?

Turned out that Lori had stepped back from the investment as well as she had tweeted she “wound up not liking the product”. Michael later revealed that he had refused to sign the contract that would give Lori decision-making powers for a year. After the Shark Tank Plate Topper received significant recognition and resulted there were spikes in the sale.

In 2018, Michael patented a design called bowl topper a product similar to Plate Topper to be used for bowls. Today the company website is no longer active. This might signal that Plate Topper might have gone out of business.

Plate Topper net worth:

When Michael appeared on Shark Tank he revealed that the company was valued at $15 million at that time. During the pitch, Tseng revealed that he had made $ 1 million worth of sales last year out of which $500,000 was his profit.

Plate Topper profit graph
Sales and Profits

Investors details:

Micheal Tseng got this production working in 2011 after he received $18,000 through crowdfunding. The company was making very good sales but he wanted to have his product in retail outlets with this intention in mind Michael went on the show. he received an offer from Lori of $90,000 for 8% of the stakes but she stepped out of the deal after the show as well.

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What is Plate Topper?

Plate Topper is an air-tight lid that is placed on the circular plate. The edges of the topper are made of silicone that creates an airtight seal so strong that it lifts the plate with it easily.

Who founded Plate Topper?

Michael Tseng had an idea for a plastic topper while he was away from his university in his hometown. He had an idea for a suction plate and then combined it with a microwave plate to finally develop Plate Topper.

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