August 23, 2009 10:02 PM by Cindy Adams
On tonight’s episode of Shark Tank, the Sharks move from behind a stark and impersonal podium to comfortable leather chairs toget up close and personalwithentrepreneurs who squirm as they pitch their products andbeg for investments. All in all, a home cook, an unconventional artist, a mother who wants to help children relax, a goofy educator, and a father and son music making teamenter the Shark Tank for a chance to get their ideas off the ground and into the marketplace.
First to enter the Shark Tank was Marian Cruz who believes every home cook will want her innovative product, the Turbobaster. She wanted $35k for a 30% stake in her company. The Turbobaster is a battery operated baster with a silicon brush and a juice injector. Unfortunately, Marian had no prototype, didn’t know what her manufacturing costs would be, and was clueless as to how many basters sell in the current market.
Kevin O. and Barbara were out due to the unknown cost factor. Robert was out next for the same reason. Kevin H. liked the product and offered to put up $35k for a licensing deal and would give Marian royalties of 2%. Marian was about to take his offer, but Daymond offered $40k with 2% a royalty off the top, for a 51% stake in the company. Kevin H. argued that he knows kitchen products, so Daymond raised the offer to $50k. Ultimately, Marian went with Kevin H. who is the king of the infomercial.
Up next was Brian Parks, whose company is called Chopstick Art. He wanted $100k for 10% of his company. Brian discovered 25 million pairs of chopsticks are thrown out each year and thought it was such a waste, so he’s designed products made with recycled bamboo chopsticks. He had a really cool basket that folded up flat that the Sharks loved, But, Kevin H. believed it was not a “gotta have” product, so he was out.
Robert and Kevin O. were out next. Daymond felt the product wasn’t big enough for him, so he was out. Barbara was last out telling Brian he was too small for the Sharks. Oh well, good try Brian.
Lori Lite was next to meet the Sharks. Her product is called Stress Free Kids, and she wanted $250k for 20% of her company. Her son is hyperactive, so she created stories that entertained him and also incorporated stress free techniques to help him fall asleep quickly at night. Lori wrote, created, and produced all of the books in her product line. Last year she sold 30,000 units, but only netted $50k.
Robert was out first, then Kevin H. Kevin O. offered to give Lori $250k for 100% of the company, but she declined his offer, so he was out. Daymond called her a star and offered her $250k for 51% of her company, while Barbara offered her $250k for a 50% stake. Robert suggested she call her husband and ask him what he thinks, since he is part owner of the company.
Lori approached the Sharks once more and said she was not willing to give up more than 40% of the company. Barbara immediately countered and said her offer was off the table for anything under 50%. Daymond said if he couldn’t have control, his he was out. Finally, Lori decided to take Barbara’s offer and retain most of the control.
Ken Bradford walked in to meet the Sharks wearing a crazy outfit and hat. His product is 50 State Capitals and he asked for $155k for a 10% interest in his company. The product used funny and silly cards to teach children state capitals using images. All of the Sharks believed the business was not a money maker and declined to make Ken an offer.
The father and son team of Josh and Jeff Cohen were up next. Jeff, the father, did most of the talking and told the Sharks the company was called Voyage Air Guitar. They wanted a whopping $500k for a measly 5% of the company. The product was a guitar that looked and sounded incredible, but also folded in half so the guitar could be carried in a suitcase or backpack with ease. Kevin O. tried it out to see if it would stay in tune after it had been folded and then straightenedÃ¢and it sounded great. Kevin O. really knows how to play a mean riff! Robert asked Jeff what it would take to buy the license for the hinges used to create the folding guitar and Jeff said for $1 million and 49% of the patent he would agree. Kevin O. offered $500k for 51% of the company that and Jeff declined to give up control of the company.
In the meantime, Robert withdrew his interest. Kevin H. said he would join with Kevin O. on the deal. Barbara said the product made her nervous, so she stepped out and Daymond followed her lead. Finally, Jeff declined Kevin O.’s offer and in parting, said that he hoped he could work with the Sharks in the future. Kevin O. told him there was no tomorrow and that he was dead to him because he turned down the deal. How nice!
Don’t miss next week’s episode when Robert makes multiple offers to one lucky entrepreneur, and Kevin O. has words with several of those who enter the tank asking for the Shark’s moneyÃ¢Â¦
Photo Courtesy: ABC Network