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More from Who’s Your Daddy

November 30, 2009 - 8:03 am

In this week’s print edition of CityBeat, I examine the local losers in the energy-drink war, specifically, the guys behind the Who’s Your Daddy brand.  I had plenty of left over answers from my email interview with the corporation’s fallen executive, so I figured I’d make the most of it and paste it here. (I define an email interview as when a reporter and source go back and forth with questions and follow-ups via email.)

For more background on Who’s Your Daddy, you might check out CityBeat freelancer Justin McLachlan’s reporting for ShareSleuth.com.

Anyway, heeeere’s Dan Fleyshman…after the jump.

Can you give me a little bit of the story of how you got into the energy drink biz?

Started as a clothing line a decade ago when I was in high school. Trademarked the catch phrase for 300 hundred different types of products but clothing was the main focus. We made and lost millions in the clothing world and decided to go public on the stock market when we were 23 years old and launch the 1st “Flavored” energy drink… The rest of the drinks did and still do taste like “cough syrup” so we decided to stand out from the normal black/silver cans and made Yellow/Red and loud colored cans as well as an amazing taste with “Cranberry Pineapple” and then “Green Tea” we got our 1st Budweiser distributor right away and then ended up getting over 40 distributors around the country thru alot of travelling and hard work. It’s kind of like the idea that “you have to have a credit card to get a credit card…” well once we got a Budweiser distributor it was easy to get a bunch more because our drink tasted good and they knew that they picked us for a reason,,, the same thing happened with chain stores,,, we got into Albertsons and then ended up in a dozen chain stores.

So, what exactly is your relationship.title in regards to WYD these days? Who’s in charge? And what’s the connection between Deal Flow and WYD?

A year and a half ago I stepped down as President and am considered the Co-Founder and Director of Marketing. DealFlowConsulting isn’t a marketed business, it’s just a website I made for my side projects because over the last decade I’ve helped dozens of companies and so it made sense to make it into an actual company.

The numbers show that the energy drink has been booming….but it also seems pretty high risk. Is that an accurate assessment?

There are 900 energy drinks on the market and barely 20 of them do 6 figures in sales. It’s not just a high risk venture, I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody because we fought hard and beat the streets in dozens of cities to get into 28,000 stores but Red Bull, Monster and Rockstar have legions of people working for them that are trained to remove your products from the shelves in order to gain more space for their products. That’s the only reason they come out with 20 different random flavors because they want to take up more space in the coolers so there is no space for anybody but them.

How does the energy drink promotion bizness work? Is it at as events-promotion as it is drink sales? How are the players carving up the industry with niches?

Well energy drink companies spend epic amounts of $ on marketing. Red Bull focuses on wild crazy events like the air races and sky diving,,, while Rockstar focuses on skaters and hollywood types and Monster sponsors every single motorcross event possible. We stood out because we were the 1st one to sponsor a NASCAR and ended up doing it in multiple levels with different levels of cars and then we went and beat Monster/Rockstar at their own game and won 1st place in the BAJA 1000 vs 30 monster sponsored vehicles and 25 rockstar and 300 other cars when we only had 1 little engine that could : ) you can see photos if you click on media at http://www.kingofenergy.com

Wherever I saw other energy drinks sponsoring things, I went in and tried to make it look better and do more for the “niche” We were the sponsor of Award Shows on TV, the Utah State Fair was called the “Who’s Your Daddy Energy Drink Utah State Fair”, sponsored the RODEO the same night that I had a booth set-up at the B.E.T. Awards So I tried everything in orded to be diverse while most energy drinks went after “niches” when I don’t think that works because motorcross people will still buy Red Bull and Sky Divers will by Monster so I tried to make everyone happy because people have different taste buds. : )

What was the lifestyle like for young energy drink/brand entrepreneurs in San Diego?

We made and lost alot of money over the past decade since starting the company. I drive a Hummer that’s fully wrapped with Who’s Your Daddy on it if you consider that “fancy” : )

We didn’t really make money from Who’s Your Daddy, I loaned a huge amount to the company just last year on several occasions to keep it going. We barely took any salary over the past decade, we made money from raising money for other peoples companies and then ended up loaning it to w.y.d. every year, so there’s a great deal of misconception that just because you do millions in sales that your a “millionaire”.

Ok, so what’s going on with WYD? The SEC filings show a lot of problems with finances and lawsuits. It looks like WYD is trying to unload its brand to pay off an attorney and yet is launching a new product next month. What’s the status?

When the stock market crashed our stock which sat at a $1.00 a share for years dropped to pennies which made things difficult. Recently it jumped up to the .15 range after being at a penny most of the year.

The financial difficulties arised when a NASCAR Driver sued us for millions of dollars and won a judgement in a different state but,,,, HE NEVER RACED THE CAR ONE TIME!!!! We had a 20 race deal signed with him and he didn’t qualify to race so we didn’t hear from him for months and assumed that the six figures we had spent to get him set-up for the sponsorship was wasted,,, but we didn’t get mad we just kept working and this ungrateful guy went and sued us for the remaining races that he never even went to!!! Anyway, we’ve spent 6 figures in attorneys fees and then it just became too much too handle so that’s where the situation started to cause major problems… But we’ve managed to keep the company public for 4.5 years, get hundreds of thousands of energy shots spread throughout Vegas Casinos and are launching the new product next month.

Give me the bottom line on the finances: As of this quarter where are you guys?

We’re fighting along and surviving, just like we’ve always had to, the legal and accounting bills are always 6 figures a year which eats away at our profits so we’re always playing catch-up.

What’s the story with the 26,000 cases shipped to Ghana, Nigeria and Benin?

No story, we’ve sold to military based overseas before and this distributor in Nigeria ordered from us and paid multiple times for shipments of the energy drinks which totalled to 26,000 cases. He did a good job, I’d like him to sell the energy shots there, I think it would work well, the cans are very heavy to ship unlike the 2 oz shots.

You know, I’ve not been able to find out anything about this T-Bone Beverage company. Do you know who runs it?

[pasted from press release]

About T-Bone Beverages LLC

T-Bone Beverages has been doing international trading of food products for over twenty years through several affiliated entities. The company has been entirely focused on international trade which includes importing rice from Thailand, frozen fish and poultry from all over the world to West Africa. Additionally they have handled coffee, table grapes, and other grains in bulk all over the world.

Yeah, but who are they? Who owns them? Where are they based?

They’re just 1 of 46 distributors that we’ve had, I’m not sure what the focus is on them.
I wish I had a better answer but I don’t know what you mean by “Who are they” it’s just like asking “Who is the Budweiser Distributor”

There’s 100’s of people that work at these distributors and they work like clockwork, their usually inherited from their parents and grandparents that started many decades ago.

They are based in Africa and ordered from us multiple times, we shipped the energy drinks to them and they sold well repeatedly, the cost of shipping was quite expensive and our drinks had to sit at customs for long periods of time which was frustrating but in the end it was good because the distributor did a good job, they wrapped their vehicles like in the pictures and didn’t have alot of competition except Red Bull out there.

The new product, F.I.T., sounds like a major departure from the WYD’s style. According to press releases is it right that the beverage will be marked via email and through infomercials?

F.I.T. Energy has the same look and feel it’s just made with an AMAZING ingredient that has been featured on Barbara Walters, 20/20, etc. and that’s why we are going to push it to the masses thru email and infomercials. It’s a berry flavor and is ultra healthy.

Does the move from the “Who’s Your Daddy?” to F.I.T. represent and ultimate failure of the WYD brand?

F.I.T. is just a generic name that is easy to market for the health industry.

Failure? How can a company that did an 9.5 million dollar licensing deal in Europe when the owners were 19 years old and then sold clothing into 6 major department stores and then became the youngest owners of a publicly traded company in the world under the brand name Who’s Your Daddy and then follow up and sell millions of energy drinks into 28,000 plus stores in multiple countries and has been featured on everything from CNN to Entrepreneur magazine be considered a failure after 10 years running

Someone tipped me off to the indictment of your man Edon Moyal regarding drug charges? What’s your take on that?

Edon has been my partner since high school, he’s who I started the company with, he just had a baby last night!!! As far as the drug charges, it’s sad that he has to go thru this case when it had nothing to do with him,,, the d.e.a. was investigating someone for 2.5 years and ended up arresting dozens of people in the aftermath. I’d prefer if you didn’t write about this because Edon has never done drugs let alone sold any and I can’t even get him to have a drink of alcohol on my birthday let alone ever go out to a club. So it’s sad that he’s in this case when all he does is work and spend time at home.

Also, I noticed with the criminal case against Edon, it lists the DEA as having seized your boat. What’s up with that?

I never owned a boat, one of the guys in the case bought a boat from my store last year and when everything he owned got seized they took that as well. The boat was in his name, insurance in his name, title in his name, so it’s like me being the “Mercedes” dealership and saying that my Mercedes got seized when I just sold the boat thru a charter company.

Anyways, although I’m not in that d.e.a. case whatsoever, I prefer if you didn’t write about it because the case is still going on currently there are dozens of people in jail over it and the actual trials aren’t starting for months even though their whole situation happened back in March. There’s so many lawyers involved, I wouldn’t want myself or your newspaper to get pulled in over their headaches.

You play poker don’t you? How’s that working out for you? I have to say, it makes a source difficult to trust.

I do play poker, mostly at Charity events that we sponsor, just 4 days ago Who’s Your Daddy Drinks and I sponsored an event in L.A. and raised $60,000 for children.
As far as trusting a “poker player”, they are the most honorable people about keeping their word off the table, on the table it’s a game of deception and cunning thinking processes, off the table they make promises and are willing to do anything in the world to keep them.

If you don’t trust me then I’d prefer if you stop contacting me, I’ve been overly helpful in responding to all your questions because the truth is way more interesting than b.s. conspiracy theories.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. vmxracer permalink
    December 27, 2009 - 1:40 pm 1:40 pm

    Don’t believe a word this guy says…..the DEA has Edon ON TAPE sending packages of dope thru the mail!!!!!!

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