UM Grads Invention Breaks Kickstarter Record - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

UM Grads Invention Breaks Kickstarter Record

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MISSOULA -

A University of Montana graduate gets national attention after his invention breaks a record on Kickstarter.com, a popular platform used to fund creative projects.

The coolest cooler took over the top spot of being the most funded idea on the website after launching in July.

It's taking the internet by storm. A cooler equipped with a battery charged blender, USB charger, waterproof blue tooth speaker and more.

The coolest cooler has raised almost $10.4 million on Kickstarter since July as of air time.

"I'm committed to making it as amazing as I can," said the mastermind behind the cooler, Ryan Grepper.

Grepper, a UM grad, was just hoping to raise his goal of $50,000.

"Nine or 10 years ago I created a blender out of an old weed whacker motor that I took to the beach."

The idea formed from there and Grepper took it to Kickstarter for the first time last November, but he didn't reach his goal.

"Really I took lessons, learned and adjusted my strategy and relaunched."

Now it's a hit; the reason for the cooler's success? It's simple.

"Ryan and his colleagues have identified simple problems and figured out a solution to them," said Paul Gladen, the director of Blackstone LaunchPad at UM.

He gives advice to the UM community on how to make an idea a success.

"He's looked to those needs and problems and thought how can we solve that? He's solved it cooley and people have said, ‘that's awesome, I want one of those,” Gladen said.

Soon it will be all about production, getting the Coolest and other prizes out to more than its 50,000 backers.

"It's really back to the grind. Every day is a deadline for the production of the Coolest," Grepper said.

For now he's spending time celebrating his success.

The previous king of Kickstarter is the Pebble, a customizable smart watch.

You have until Friday to back the Coolest, and get the cooler at a discount price. You can head to Kickstarter to check it out.

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