The owners of Cousins Maine Lobster Company, Jim Tselikis, and Sabin Lomac, are real-life cousins who both hail from Maine.
They ate lobster every weekend growing up and missed it when they moved to Los Angeles in the 1990s.
They founded Cousins Maine Lobster Food Truck in 2012 to capitalize on Los Angeles’ burgeoning street food culture.
They achieved remarkable success within weeks of investing in the vehicle, and they were able to recoup their investment in no time.
Cousins Maine Lobster opened its first physical location around one month before the show’s premiere, still located inside the Live Mixx Lounge in downtown Pasadena.
They envisioned expanding their business even further when they went to the Shark Tank in episode 406.
What Is Cousins Maine Lobster?
Cousins Maine Lobster is a food truck company specializing in lobster, primarily lobster from Maine. They have a network of food trucks around the state.
Two cousins from Maine are the founders and operators of Cousins Maine Lobster Food truck in Los Angeles, California, hoping to expand their business by adding additional food trucks.
The company claims to have the best Maine lobster sandwich in the country because it can deliver lobster directly from Maine “from shore to door” in less than twenty-four hours, making it the best choice.
The entrepreneurs believe they can get better lobster prices than their competitors because of their Maine roots and family, who help them maintain and develop ties with fishermen that other food trucks cannot compete with.
Currently, the cousins run their business with a single truck but expect to add one or two more soon.
You can order from their exquisite menu in three ways: through a roadside truck located across the country, local restaurants, online, or through their mobile app (currently in beta testing).
The company can deliver lobsters live to almost any location in the continental United States. They can also cater to special occasions such as birthday parties.
|Company Name||Cousins Maine Lobster|
|Entrepreneur||Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselkis|
|Product / Business||Lobster food truck featuring local, fresh lobster|
|Investment Asking For||$55,000 for 5% equity in Cousins Maine Lobster|
|Final Deal||$55,000 for 15% equity in Cousins Maine Lobster|
|Episode||Season 4 Episode 9|
|Business Status||In Business|
Who Is The Founder Of Cousins Maine Lobster?
Cousin’s Main Lobster was founded by Jimmy Tselikis and Sabin Lomac, two cousins who grew up in Maine and now own the restaurant.
Like many before him, Sabin Lomac moved to California in 2006 to pursue a career as an actor.
Some years later, Jim Tselikis visited his cousin in Maine and spent considerable time reminiscing about their childhood outside Portland, Maine.
When the conversation shifted to lobster, the cousins agreed that there are few things like Maine lobster on the West Coast.
Things were about to change, however. When Sabin and Jim joined their efforts to raise the $20,000 needed to bring the lobster delicacy to Los Angeles, they established Cousins Maine Lobster, a food truck serving Maine lobster.
Cousins Maine Lobster got off to a strong start because of a clever blend of word-of-mouth marketing and a well-executed social media campaign.
The restaurant’s signature lobster rolls, available only at the restaurant, were praised by customers from the East Coast for their authenticity, freshness, and high-quality meat.
The success of Cousins Maine Lobster made the company the subject of a local Los Angeles newscast, which led to an appearance on the nationally televised Shark Tank, where the company attempted to raise funds to purchase a second truck.
Cousins Maine Lobster Before Shark Tank
A lobster cage and a Maine harbor were pictured as Jim Tselkis and Sabin Lomac introduced themselves in the video.
They claimed to be relatives from the state of Maine. The lobster, according to Jim, was unquestionably the best part of growing up in the state of Maine.
According to him, Maine lobster is the most delicious lobster meat you will ever taste. They now live in Los Angeles.
The camera cut to the side of a food truck with Cousin’s Maine Lobster emblazoned on it. Jim poked his head out the door and asked if anyone wanted some fresh Maine lobster.
According to the narrator, in Los Angeles, food trucks are becoming increasingly popular. He said they wanted to combine two of the most successful industries in the region.
A video showing hot lobster meat being tossed into a skillet appears on the screen. Sabin explained that their business was thriving, but they could not serve everyone.
The company considered buying another food truck, but they were aware that it would not be possible for them to do so alone.
Sabin stated that obtaining the Sharks’ financing was critical to the company’s success. The video came to a close with Sabin perched on Jim’s shoulders.
How Was The Shark Tank Pitch Of Cousins Maine Lobster?
Jim and Sabin appeared on Shark Tank seeking an investment of $55,000 in exchange for a 5% stake in Cousins Maine Lobster.
They shared the lobster rolls with the Sharks, as any good food entrepreneur would do.
They were expecting assistance from the Sharks to expand their business and get a few more food trucks on the road.
They had only been operating for a few months before the taping, yet they had already made over $150,000 in sales!
Maine residents made a lot of money from their exclusive relationships with lobster wholesalers, which was understandable.
Mark was unable to obtain an answer to his question regarding Cousins Maine Lobster’s economics, so he had to leave.
Kevin believes the company is overvalued at $1.1 million, and he has decided to leave as well (he admits a soft spot for crustaceans as well).
Daymond explained that he used to work at Red Lobster, which piqued his interest. Nevertheless, he was not interested in the 5 percent valuation offered by the cousins nor the 8 percent valuation offered by the two cousins. As a result, he decided to withdraw his interest.
Robert offers $55,000 for a 25 percent stake, while Barbara offers $55,000 for a 17 percent stake in Cousins Maine Lobster. Robert then offers $100K in exchange for a 25 percent stake.
Sabin and Jim begin questioning Robert about marketing techniques. Robert feels questioned, and he leaves.
The Cousins Maine Lobster Company responds to Barbara’s offer with $55K for a 12 percent stake.
They eventually agree on $55,000 for 15 percent, and Barbara is made an honorary Mainer.
Final Deal: Barbara Corcoran agreed to invest $55,000 for 15% equity in Cousins Maine Lobster.
What Happened To Cousins Maine Lobster After Shark Tank?
After striking a deal with Barbara on Shark Tank, Cousin’s Maine Lobster has extended its truck fleet to include trucks in Nashville, Tennessee, and San Antonio, Texas.
They have appeared on a wide range of television shows, including The Today Show, The Chew, and Master Chef.
Cousin’s Maine Lobster has expanded to include more than 20 trucks and a brick-and-mortar restaurant in West Hollywood, California.
They even offer their lobster feasts online and through the QVC television network. You can order their delectable lobster from their website if you cannot visit one of their locations.
Cousins Maine Lobster Shark Tank Update
A few months after their first appearance on The Food Network, Cousins Maine Lobster appears in a follow-up segment in episode 413.
According to Barbara Corcoran, every time she gets involved with a food business, it will be a success! Los Angeles Times named the truck the best food truck in LA for 2012.
When Jim and Sabin present, they are bound to talk about their desire to become the number one fisherman of Maine lobster on the West Coast.
The franchising of Cousins Maine Lobster is also on the agenda to grow into other western cities.
The cousins get their lobster delivered from Biddeford, Maine (a great spot on the Maine coast) every day to ensure they get the freshest product.
According to an old saying, “Lobster tastes better in Maine,” Cousins Lobster Truck’s success can largely be attributed to their relationships in Maine. It’s the truth, I swear!
The cousins are featured in the second update of season 5, episode 525, at their house. They are making MILLIONS of dollars in sales and are about to open their first “brick and mortar” store.
The Cousins Maine Lobster saga continues in episode 713 of season seven with yet another twist.
Currently, the company is franchising and brought some of its 11 franchisees to Portland to see where lobster is raised.
A truck costs between $250,000 and $350,000, and each franchisee pays Cousins an 8 percent royalty charge on the sales. Cousins are also the source for all of their lobster.
Together with its franchisees, Cousin’s has a brick-and-mortar store and 15 trucks, and an online store. Sales have reached $15 million per year and are continuing to increase!
Cousins will be included in another update in season 10 (March 2019). They’ve opened 22 food trucks across the country and have eight brick-and-mortar locations.
They currently provide a thorough franchising scheme, which has assisted them in their expansion.
The company’s success as a franchisee was noted in the update, as was the fact that they now transport lobster anywhere in the United States.
Food Truck Rehab, a show on the Food Network to premiere in April of 2021, will feature the men. You could think of it like “Restaurant Rescue,” but with food trucks instead of restaurants.
All the elements of the show will be overhauled during the performance, including the truck, the menu, social media, and everything else.
Currently, they have 36 franchises, seven of which are restaurants and the remaining 29 of which are trucks, as of July 2021.
Shark Tank Update generates roughly $29 million in revenue every year in May 2022. The company said it would expand its operations by adding three new trucks and one new restaurant in March 2022.
Is Cousins Maine Lobster Still In Business?
Yes, Cousins Maine Lobster is still in business as of May 2022, with annual revenue of $29 million.
Jim and Sabin have expanded Cousins Maine Lobster since collaborating with Barbara to include food trucks in Nashville and San Antonio and an online store.
They made several appearances on television, including appearances on The Today Show, The Chew, and Master Chef, which helped increase their market visibility.
Currently, the Cousins Maine Lobster fleet consists of 20 trucks operating in 13 sites across the country and a brick-and-mortar outlet in West Hollywood. Lobster dinners are also available for purchase online and through QVC.
The cousins are grateful for the help and advice they received from Barbara, and they take great satisfaction in offering high-quality food and exceptional customer service to their customers.
All of their employees are treated with dignity and respect, and their management team maintains open and honest communication.