Hello. Yes, he did get the million dollars and was able to keep it. Trust me, ABC is not worried about the million dollars they gave to him. It is not about the invention just as American Idol isn't really about the singer. American Idol is about text message vote charges to the tune of $50 million per week and advertising dollars. Same thing with American Inventor. The concept is just the vehicle to which the advertisers show their product. No different than a magazine. The content only brings the viewers/readers to the table for the advertisers. If ABC chooses to sell his product, they get the first one-million $$$ made and Januzs gets 25% royalties on profit after that, not revenue. He was working with Evenflo for over a year, but I think they just recently transferred everything over to a design company. The problem with this whole thing is, 25% of what? The inventor doesn't even get to negotiate a manufacturing contract. Basically, no control over anything for 7 years. The rules say that you never lose ownership, but they fail to initially tell everyone that you lose all rights to sell it on your own. ABC gets first right-of-refusal. We all have since been released to go out on our own. Funny thing is, they actually released the rest of the top 12 before they released those of us that finished in the top 24. Weird, huh? most of us that finished in the top 24 were farther along than the others with our products. On the show, when Peter cut me he said, "I wish you luck, but you don't fit the criteria".
Off camera I was told that I was finally cut for 3 reasons.
1. "Your product is cool, but you don't have a compelling story".
2. "You are too far along with your design and don't need the show".
3. "You are too smart to give the judges anything to banter about"
The contract scared almost everyone that was in the finals. None of us from season #1 saw the last contract until 1 day before flying to Hollywood for the cut from 50-24-12. My lawyer said, "Win the million or hope to finish just outside the top 12". I asked him why and he said because if you finish outside the top 12 you will get the most exposure with the least amount of attachment to ABC/Fremantle. That is just what happened to us although we didn't get much airtime because we didn't cry, argue or cause a scene. The real reality is, simply getting on the show with an interesting invention isn't enough in the execs eyes to go on primetime.
Have a great day,