MicroSalt

Early Stage

Patented a food nanoparticle that delivers 50% less sodium with full sodium flavor.

Analytics

Raised to Date: Raised: $750,000

Aggregate Commitments $

Platform

Microventures

Start Date

12/24/2020

Close Date

01/02/2022

Min. Goal

$25,000

Max. Goal

$750,000

Min. Investment

$100

Security Type

Equity - Preferred

Funding Type

RegCF

Series

Seed

Price Per Share

$1.00

Pre-Money Valuation

$5,000,000

Rolling Commitments $

Status
Funded
Reporting Date

01/31/2022

Days Remaining
Funded
% of Min. Goal

3,000%

% of Max. Goal

100%

Likelihood of Max
Funded
Avg. Daily Raise

$2,005

Momentum
Funded
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Location

West Palm Beach, Florida

Industry

Food, Beverage, & Restaurants

Tech Sector

Foodtech

Distribution Model

B2B/B2C

Margin

Low

Capital Intensity

High

Business Type

Growth

MicroSalt, with a valuation cap of $5 million, is raising funds on MicroVentures. The company aims to revolutionize the food industry with a patented a sodium nanoparticle engineered to deliver the full flavor experience of salt with half the sodium. MicroSalt’s powdered salt particles are approximately 100 times smaller than regular table salt, allowing them to be rapidly dissolved. The crowdfunding campaign has a minimum raise of $25,000 and a maximum raise of $250,000. The company also sells its own branded SaltMe! potato chips, which use its sodium nanoparticle technology. In May 2020, the company announced that its branded chips were available in 71 storesii throughout the Northeastern U.S. and Texas.

Summary Profit and Loss Statement

Most Recent Year Prior Year

Revenue

$2,557

$0

COGS

$1,412

$0

Tax

$239

$263

 

 

Net Income

$-449,333

$-118,634

Summary Balance Sheet

Most Recent Year Prior Year

Cash

$11,806

$197,998

Accounts Receivable

$9,156

$15

Total Assets

$69,250

$216,734

Short-Term Debt

$1,031

$9,156

Long-Term Debt

$0

$0

Total Liabilities

$1,031

$9,156

Financials as of: 12/24/2020
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Ratings KingsCrowd Startup Rating Methodology Article

Analyst Report Analyst Report Methodology Article

Synopsis

The American Heart Association says that nine out of 10 Americans consume too much sodium. With an average daily sodium intake of 3,400 milligrams, Americans eat more than twice the recommended amount. One common source of high sodium is snack foods. In 2007, only 10% of Americans said that they didn’t have any snacks during the day — down from 40% in 1970. 

“Snack culture” is well ingrained within the United States, and the negative health effects of a bad diet are making Americans more and more unhealthy. The need for healthier snack foods and better overall diets is apparent. MicroSalt has created a product that is a patented salt nanoparticle that provides the taste of salt but with 50% less sodium. MicroSalt operates as both a B2B and B2C company. The company sells its patented salt to various businesses who use the salt in their packaged food products as well as running SaltMe!, MicroSalt’s own potato chip line. MicroSalt has signed various agreements that it hopes can take itsproduct global. At the moment, MicroSalt’s line of potato chips is available in 71 stores across the northeast U.S as well as Texas.

MicroSalt’s current MicroVentures raise has been rated a Neutral Deal by the KingsCrowd investment team.

Price

MicroSalt is raising at a $5 million pre-money valuation. The company is offering preferred equity priced at $1 per share. While this valuation is quite attractive in comparison to other startups currently pursuing funding, it is not at all justified by the extremely low revenue that MicroSalt has seen thus far. Therefore, the price score for MicroSalt is below average.

Market

The global potato chip market reached $30 billion in 2019. MicroSalt’s branded SaltMe! Chip line could likely appeal to a smaller niche of this large market — specifically, consumers looking to eat more healthily without sacrificing their favorite snack.  The company’s potential partnerships with worldwide distribution companies certainly helps its attainable market, but the competition is stiff within this industry. Trusted name brands like Pepsico and Utz dominate the market, which makes it difficult for a new player like MicroSalt to emerge.

However, it’s also important to note that the potato chip line is not MicroSalt’s focus as a company — it’s also targeting the general salt market. Globally, the salt market was valued at $28 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow to $32 billion by 2025. This market is on par with the global chip market, but it’s also growing quite slowly. Again, MicroSalt is targeting a specific niche, specifically the submarket for low sodium salt and salt replacements. There is little evidence to indicate that this submarket will reach a substantial size, meaning that MicroSalt would need to capture a major portion of it to grow as a business.

Due to the highly niche nature of MicroSalt’s opportunity and the slow growth in its target markets, the company scores very poorly in the market metric.

Team

Victor Hugo Manzanilla is the CEO of MicroSalt. He comes to the team with 15 years of experience leading teams at large companies He worked as marketing director for Office Depot and spent 11 years at Procter & Gamble, where he was brand manager for products like Mr. Clean and Febreze.

Manzanilla is joined by COO Javier Contreras, who brings a wealth of supply chain experience. Alongside his work with MicroSalt, Contreras is a senior sourcing manager for the Clorox Company. Prior to this, Contreras also worked at Procter & Gamble as a sourcing manager.

Rounding out the team is Vice President of Sales Mike Marrote and Marketing Director Carolina Berardi. Marrote is the founder and president of M Squared, which helps emerging brands with top-line growth and cost savings. He previously was the vice president of sales at United Natural Foods, where he led 75 sales and 105 customer service professionals. Berardi has experience in building brand exposure, previously working with LAN Airlines, Nestlé, and PUIG.

While the MicroSalt team brings ample leadership and brand management experience, there is a lack of entrepreneurial work and little direct involvement in the food industry. Therefore, MicroSalt’s team score is middle of the road.

Differentiators

MicroSalt’s most alluring differentiator is healthiness. The company’s product and line of potato chips taste just like salt, yet offer 50% less sodium than some of their counterparts. Additionally, its low sodium salt is actually a form of salt. This is an important distinction as many competitors use potassium chloride as a low sodium alternative (examples include Morton Salt Substitute and MySalt). MicroSalt has also secured a patent for its low sodium salt, which increases defensibility for the product. Due to these strengths, the differentiators score for MicroSalt is its highest across all five metrics.

Performance

MicroSalt’s line of potato chips, SaltMe!, is currently available in 71 stores across the northeast U.S and Texas. The company has a supplier agreement in place with United Natural Foods Inc., which has 58 distribution centers around the country. 

 In terms of financial performance, MicroSalt has a long way to go towards profitability. Luckily for the company, its debt situation is very much under control, but its cash on hand dropped from just under $200,000 in 2018 to $12,000 in 2019. For a company that burns through cash at a rate of $55,717 a month, this could raise problems for MicroSalt. The business has incurred a negative monthly net income for every month in 2020 barring July, which was due to a research and development tax credit. Overall, the company operated at a net loss of $526,471 in 2020, $449,333 in 2019, and $118,634 in 2018.

Balancing the strong product distribution against weak financial execution, MicroSalt’s performance score is middling.

Bearish Outlook

Financially, MicroSalt is not off to a positive start. The industry that it operates within is small and full of competition, and its products aren’t particularly revolutionary. Another larger company putting money into its own research and development of a similar product is a possibility and would spell disaster for MicroSalt. With cash on hand dwindling and a burn rate of $55,717 a month, it’s easy to see a path towards failure for MicroSalt.

Bullish Outlook

MicroSalt has already patented technology that does provide a healthier alternative for sodium In a country desperately in need of a healthy alternative for sodium, that’s a good thing. The company has existing partnerships with distribution companies, and it intends to break into the restaurant industry with a special applicator for its low sodium salt. If these expansionary endeavors pan out, MicroSalt could capture a decent portion of the healthy food market. The executive team has strong leadership experience which could help develop the existing framework of MicroSalt into a successful company.

Executive Summary

Taking everything into account about MicroSalt, the company looks as though it could move in either direction. Its technology addresses an important need within the United States and the world at large. The executive team is made up of experienced leaders. MicroSalt’s twofold business plan of selling its salt technology to other companies (B2B) as well as having its own line of potato chips (B2C) also gives it more possibilities for success. However, the market that it is entering is small and full of established competition, and current financials don’t bode well for future success. Altogether, MicroSalt is a Neutral Deal at this time.

For questions regarding the KingsCrowd staff pick or ratings for this company, please reach out to support@kingscrowd.com

Analysis written by Ethan Thomas.

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MicroSalt on Microventures
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Platform: Microventures
Security Type: Equity - Preferred
Valuation: $5,000,000

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