Every entrepreneur dreams of finding someone to invest in their dream business idea. And while there are various ways to find investors for one’s business, one of the more famous ones is pitching your product on the reality show Shark Tank.
Shark Tank is an American business reality television series that began in 2009. The show features a panel of judges, who are entrepreneurs and investors. The judges decide whether to invest in the contestants’ products and ideas. But there have been a couple of business ideas which have been rejected by the show’s panel of judges and have gone ahead to become extremely successful! So, here is a list of just that.
Originally founded by Jamie Siminoff, Ring is a company that crafts doorbells that connect to smart devices of the home owners and notify them of who’s at their door. This happens via a camera installed within the door bell that basically allows the home owners to talk to their guests on video calls. Siminoff had pitched this idea of his on Shark Tank, and asked for a $700,000 investment for 10% of the company. He received only one offer, which he declined. But after the episode had aired, his revenues increased and ultimately, Siminoff sold ‘Doorbot’ to Amazon for $1 billion.
Copa Di Vino sells pre-packaged wine by the glass. Something which James Martin discovered while travelling through France. He realised the idea was an untapped area of the wine business in America and could be banked on. Martin asked for $600,000 in exchange for 30% of this brand, he was rejected. But once again, after the episode was aired, investors approached James and today, the company is a huge success.
Coffee Meets Bagel is a dating site that offers people food discounts once they decide to meet their dating match. The owners Arum, Dawoon, and Soo Kang offered the panel a 5% equity stake for $500,000. One of the judges Mark Cuban offered them $30 million to buy the entire company, but the Kang sisters did not want to give up their ownership and walked away from the offer. Ultimately, they raised $23.2 million for their business idea, and launched it in multiple cities across America. In fact, it is also available to use in India.
John Tabis’ The Bouqs Company delivers flower bouquets to their customers that are straight from the farm. Tabis had asked the judges for $258,000 for a 3% stake and was declined. Though after this episode, he ended up getting $55 million by other investors. And then, there was no looking back.
Chef Big Shake is a food outlet by chef Shawn Davis that sells his signature shrimp burger. Davis wanted to sell this burger of at grocery stores and restaurants, but no one showed much interest in it then. Once on a Shark Tank episode, he asked the panel of judges for $200,000 investment in exchange for a 25% stake. No one agreed to the deal, but post this, he was approached by an investor, and Davis’ business idea ended up becoming worth $5 million in just a year.
Beauty brand The Lip Bar was founded by ex-stock broker Melissa Butler. She decided to make her own vegan, all natural lipsticks as there were very few make up options for vegans anyway. On Shark Tank, she pitched for an investment of $125,000, in return for a 20% stake. But the judges denied the offer. Soon after, the young entrepreneur pitched her idea to Target. Now her lipsticks are sold at its stores nationwide.
Joel Clark and his brother Jon Clark launched Kodiac Cakes, a company that sells pancake, muffin and brownie mixes. The recipes contain 100% whole grains and are non-GMO. The duo pitched the idea on Shark Tank by asking for $500,000 in return for a 10% stake. Though they received two generous offers from the judges, the brothers declined them and ended up becoming a $100 million a year business, regardless.
Founded by Don Hejny, Nerdwax is a company that sells a skin friendly, organic formula that helps people keep their glasses in place. It acts as a glue that you can apply on the pads of your glasses to keep them in one place, on your nose. The judges of the show offered Heiny two deals, both of which he declined and walked away from. But later on, Nerdwax’ sales increased to $1 million!
Mark Bernstein, founder of MealEnders, came up with a weight loss product that tastes sweet, but curbs the craving to keep eating. He pitched his idea for $350,000 in return for 8% of the company. The judges declined, but Bernstein’s MealEnders’ sales became worth $5 million after a year.
Founders Steven Sashen and Lena Phoenix created shoes that mimic the experience of running barefoot. Meaning, the shoes are very thin lined. The duo declined the offer they received from Kevin O’Leary for $400,000 for a 50% equity. But eventually, ended up raising $1 million for their idea through crowdfunding.
Rejections don’t always mean that it is the end of the road.