Dippin’ Dots Files Bankruptcy

Dippin’ Dots, the manufacturer of those tiny balls of ice cream found at shopping malls and amusement parks, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in Kentucky Friday, potentially bringing an end to the company’s 24 year run. The company filed for protection after failing to reach an amicable agreement with Regions Financial, to whom the company owes about $10 million, and has been negotiating with for several weeks.

Dippin’ Dots has liabilities totaling about $12 million, with assets of about $20.2 million, which have been frozen as part of the bankruptcy proceedings. The assets reportedly include more than $3 million of ready-to-sell ice cream inventory, which the company is still selling. Company spokesman Steve Heisner said in a statement that despite the bankruptcy, the company has every intention of remaining in business.

Dippin’ Dots was founded in 1987 when microbiologist Curt Jones utilized his extensive expertise in cryogenic technology to come up with the tiny balls of ice cream. The Paducah, Kentucky-based company markets its niche product as “the ice cream of the future,” and recently began selling it in supermarkets , but sales have not been strong because the product requires a storage temperature of -20 Fahrenheit, considerably colder than most home freezers.

Dippin’ Dots are primarily sold in stadiums, amusement parks, shopping malls, and vending machines, but the company also ships the product anywhere in the US for sales that come in on its website.