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Before Ben Flajnik swept audiences (and now-ex Courtney Robertson) off their feet with his middle-parted hair and sensitive demeanor on The Bachelorette Season 7 and The Bachelor Season 16, he was running his own winery, Envolve Wines. In a new interview with Young Entrepreneur, Ben reveals that, while he may have loved and lost on The Bachelor, being the rose-doler turned out to be an incredibly lucrative business decision.

Asked how much impact the show had on Envolve’s profits, Ben explains, “Maybe 50 percent. Probably more.” The winery, which Ben founded in 2008 with his two best sixth grade buds, started out producing just 2,400 cases per year. Now, Ben says, they’ve upped their annual production to 20,000 cases.

In fact, Ben can pinpoint the moment he realized they could turn his screentime into dollar bills. “It wasn’t until after the season premiere of The Bachelor. “That night, Mike, our third co-founder (Danny Fay), and I were hanging out together, just watching online orders fly in. We looked at each other and thought, ‘Holy crap, we have something big here.’”

Despite The Bachelor’s contribution to the winery’s current success, the business is solidly built on a foundation of blood, sweat, and grape-stomping. Becoming a winemaker is a costly endeavor, Ben reveals — so much so that he’s poured about $750,000 of his own money into the business.

That’d better be some delicious vino.

Source: Young Entrepreneur