Tonight, “Shark Tank” will offer up opportunities to learn. It’s also going to give you opportunities, apparently, to learn about tuna. That’s the beauty of this show: They throw so many different things at the wall and hope that some of its sticks and is appealing to the viewer.
We’re ready to go tonight with our weekly live review, where we’ll hand down for you our take on every individual presentation, including what worked, what didn’t, and if the Sharks handled the pitch the right way. Hey, sometimes they don’t! They deserve criticism just as much as the entrepreneurs do at times. Not only will be give you updates on all of these products as the show progresses, but you can click on the links below to be taken to their official websites — just in case you’re interested in checking out more information or making a purchase.
EcoFlower – Surely, you’ve purchased flowers for someone before; but wooden flowers, made mostly of recycled materials? That may be something new. We admired the quick responses that the company founder had to the Sharks as she made it clear to them that her products do have demand among many lower-income people who don’t want to spend $50 on something that will only stick around for a couple of weeks. She proved her concept.
Unfortunately, the problem came out here through how much equity she’d already sold to keep the company afloat in the time it took her to get on the show. This would’ve been an extremely depressing ending if all she’d wanted for the entirety of the past few years was to get on the show, only to leave with nothing. Luckily, Daymond John was there with an offer that allowed her to keep some stake in the company, and if the deal goes through due diligence, would put everyone on equal footing. The reality is the reality: If you’re making millions, having only a small equity stake is okay. It’s better than owning 100% of a dud.
The Style Club – This is a company really hoping to redefine what it means to be a modern fashion brand catering to young audiences. We do think that what is the business is doing is pretty impressive, especially since you’re only talking about one that is still relatively early in its run. The big issue is that it was almost hard to figure out why they were there, largely because of an exclusive deal with Urban Outfitters. Sure, you can try to make more direct-to-consumer channels happen, but how do you really build up something else when you already have such a specific channel in place? Without a big swing for the fences, the only thing that they can hope for is to keep the Urban Outfitters deal going.
Here’s where the Club gets lucky: There were two people willing to make that swing, and one of them was Mark Cuban. He knows how to blow up the online space thanks to Red Dress Boutique, which is one of the premier “Shark Tank” companies now. This was the best-case scenario for a company that, halfway through the pitch, we’d almost written off.
Safe Catch – If you love tuna but hate the high levels of mercury, all signs point to this being a great product for you! Unfortunately, it wasn’t the products for the Sharks, who liked the idea but strongly disliked everything attached to it, including the extreme amount of cash that the company had already burned through. It was losing money, and after more than a decade working on the technology, there wasn’t enough tangible proof that anything could be turned around for the Sharks to make money. Maybe being on the show will help them, since that may be the only option at this point other than maybe licensing the technology to another company.
#besomebody – This is your chance to either learn a new skill, or pass along your knowledge to someone else, all through an intuitive web and mobile platform. The idea here is interesting as a way to use the platform to either make a little more or further your passions. The problem is that it is incredibly ambitious. Specifically, it’s so ambitious that the valuation was out of control for the amount of money that it was actually pulling in on a consistent basis. Also, this guy was somewhat out of control and didn’t do a great job selling the company versus selling the inspirational story. We do agree with him that there are probably a number of people who get something great out of this platform. The problem is that at some point down the line, you have to make it clear to the Sharks that there is a way for them to make some money. That wasn’t here, and it wasn’t even close.
Want more highlights from “Shark Tank” this season? Then be sure to head over to this link. (Photo: ABC.)