I have watched virtually every episode of Shark Tank for the last four years and I can say, without a doubt, this was the most entertaining episode ever! The entrepreneurs all gave eye-catching presentations and the Sharks were hysterical. In particular, Kevin O’Leary (aka Mr. Wonderful) got off five or six truly funny lines. One entrepreneur, however, stood out above the rest and will be awarded tonite’s Platinum Sharky Award…….
Platinum Sharky Award……Charles from Breathometer
Charles is a serial entrepreneur. He started and sold his first business in 18 months and used part of the proceeds to start Breathometer. This gives an entrepreneur immediate credibility with investors……he’s done it before and he used his own money to fund his next startup. Charles’s product is a smart phone attachment that allows people to check their blood alcohol level by simply breathing into their “smart phone breathalyzer”. This will help prevent users from driving under the influence.
After raising some additional money using a crowd funding site called Indiegogo.com, Charles sold 4,000 units in 30 days. With the Federal blood alcohol guidelines dropping from .08 to .05, the Sharks were all interested and joined forces to invest $1 million for 30% equity. Mark Cuban was the “lead Shark” and took 15% of the equity for $500K.
Charles probably could have squeezed the Sharks a little more (they were expecting a counter offer of 25% equity after he talked with his CFO on the phone) but he was thrilled to get a million dollar offer. This will eliminate the need to raise a million dollar round of financing from Venture Capitalists. This can be a very time-consuming activity and distract you from running your business while trying to raise capital.
No Shark Chum Tonite! The other three entrepreneurs held their own and were very entertaining.
Amber from Kane & Couture received a $150K investment on the condition she deliver initial orders from seven department stores totaling $400K for her upscale dog accessories (including dog tuxedos!). Amber made one critical mistake but recovered nicely. After last year’s revenue of $90K , she forecasted $1.8 million for next year! This is a very aggressive forecast and showed that Amber was being a bit unrealistic. Daymond called her on it when he made his investment contingent on her delivering $400K in orders. Even though I liked her products (perfect for NYC!), I think this will be an uphill battle.
The hilarious Mr. Wonderful bowed out of the bidding by saying, “I think I’m getting a fever, I just saw a dog wearing a bow tie”.
Nzinga, Lakesha, and Tanecia from Mango Preserves sang their catchy slogan throughout their presentation and the Sharks loved it! “Spread it, Mix it, Shake it, Stir it”. Their COGS (Cost of Goods Sold) was too high and their margins too low to get an investment, but they were a fun trio and will do well with their great-tasting Mango products without the Sharks.
Jim from Man Medals gave the funniest presentation ever! His buff alter-ego (a shirtless male model) earned medals from his wife for things that are hard for us guys to do……like putting the toilet seat down when we’re done, changing the toilet paper roll properly, etc. It was a laugh-out-loud moment for me and the Sharks! Alas, his actual sales were $2,500 and that prompted the newly funny Mr. Wonderful to warn the other Sharks, “I forbid you to proceed”.
He then added, “At least this was good, bad theatre”.