Joe Pippins’ latest invention — the Anywhere Cup Holder — can support as much as 50 pounds in a single cup, he said.
It’s a solution that serves the needs of everyone from mechanics and fishing enthusiasts to gardeners and people who entertain in their homes, said Pippins, founder of Live Holdings, which produces the Anywhere Cup Holder, as well as Pippins’ popular Fishing Caddy invention.
“We wanted to create a product that would allow [customers] to be able to select the areas that they want their friends to place their drinks, and then they will have a process to detach those when they’re done entertaining,” he said.
The device fits most water bottles, glasses or thermoses, and is the product of decades of prior entrepreneurial and inventive thinking, Pippins said. As a boy, he used to piece together cereal boxes to make cars for his sister’s Barbie dolls, he said.
“Pretty much since the time I was in a little kid, I’ve been a natural problem solver,” Pippins said.
The Anywhere Cup Holder debuts just a year after the Fishing Caddy, a fishing gear container that doubles as a seat, which was featured on Steve Harvey’s Funderdome show in July 2017, he said.
Pippins walked away from the show with $20,000 to aid his bootstrapped firm, he said. The Live Holding’s team now consists of him, his wife Jennifer, and his college-bound son, Joseph Jr.
“We are a family owned business,” Pippins said. “We’re doing this as a way to not only show my kids that they can build a business from the ground up without a lot of capital, but also it’s a great way for us to bond while providing value to the consumer as well.”
Having risen from homelessness to small business ownership, Pippins’ biggest struggle now is securing retail accounts, he said.
“We, personally, have put most of our savings into this company because we believe that it’s a great product and we’re doing everything we can on our end to maintain ownership of it to the point where we have a product that has been fully developed,” Pippins said.
Both the Anywhere Cup Holder and Fishing Caddy are made in the U.S., he said, noting the preferences, concerns and opinions of the firm’s customers are taken seriously.
“A lot of times when individuals start companies or products, they don’t listen to the consumer,” Pippins said. “They just build something and then kind of hope and pray that it sells. Along this entire journey, we’ve spoken to consumers … our target audience and asked them what we need to do to bring the most value through our product.”
Live Holdings is currently looking for hardware stores and other retail outlets to carry both of his professional inventions, he said.
“We’ve got some really unique products that I think will provide a lot of value to retail stores if they have some interest in getting some fresh new products on their shelves,” Pippins said.