The Stars Of ‘Shark Tank’ Reveal Their Favorite Success Stories

By Trista
The Stars Of ‘Shark Tank’ Reveal Their Favorite Success Stories

For the past 10 years, the popular television show ‘Shark Tank’ has been helping to kickstart hundreds of great businesses. Many entrepreneurs have made it onto this fascinating show and had their dreams come true thanks to one of the expert investors on Shark Tank. It’s not enough to make it into the show, though. The owners of these businesses need to put in a lot of time and energy into making their time in the spotlight work to their advantage. 

For those that get the opportunity to work with one of the investors from Shark Tank, they could experience life-changing sales in a very short time. There have been a lot of ideas that have not taken off even after appearing on the show, but several companies are thriving thanks to their origins on Shark Tank. You may have even heard of them and not known they were a Shark Tank product. To learn more about some of the biggest success stories of Shark Tank, keep reading below.

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Safe Grabs

Safe Grabs are for anyone who has had to deal with burned palms and fingers after taking a plate or bowl out of the microwave. That’s probably happened to all of us at some point in time. Invented by Cyndi Lee, Safe Grabs are silicone mats that you place underneath a dish while you reheat it in the microwave. 

After heating your food, Safe Grabs acts as an oven mitt to protect your hands from the hot dish. Shark Tank investor Lori Greiner invested $75,000 in Safe Grabs back in 2016. Since then, these innovative products have generated more than $5 million in sales thanks to their innovative idea.

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BedJet

Occasionally, entrepreneurs do not get any investments from the Sharks on Shark Tank. That happened to Mark Aramli, a former NASA employee who pitched his BedJet system on the show in 2015. BedJet is a mattress pad that allows the user to control the climate and adjust it to their ideal temperature.

Aramli valued his product at $2.5 million and planned to sell each BedJet for $499. The Sharks all disagreed with Mark Aramli’s valuation, and all turned him down because of that. Although he walked away empty-handed, Amrali ended up winning in the end. Within a year-and-a-half of his appearance on Shark Tank, he had sold over $3 million worth of products thanks to his commitment.

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Instafire

For campers, fishers, and people who love to spend time outdoors, InstaFire is a must-have product. The InstaFire kits are a great way to start a fire because users don’t need to have knowledge of fire-starting skills. InstaFire was pitched on Shark Tank in 2016, and Lori Greiner and Mark Cuban teamed up to invest $300,000 in the product due to their interest.

In the years following InstaFire’s appearance on Shark Tank, the company has grown exponentially. In 2019 alone, InstaFire is projected to make more than $5 million thanks to growing sales. This company also plans to expand internationally as well as develop InstaFire-ready logs for igniting.

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Ring Doorbell

The Ring Doorbell is one of the most popular and recognizable products to come from Shark Tank. This product is a camera and doorbell hybrid designed to help homeowners know who is at their door and ward off any unwanted visitors. CEO James Siminoff appeared on Shark Tank in 2013 but was met with less-than-enthused Sharks.

Only one Shark made an offer due to that low interest. Mark Cuban has stated several times that if the Ring product was presented to him again, he would decline it because of his initial view. Lucky for Siminoff, Ring has exploded, therefore becoming a leader in the doorbell industry. Thanks to its success, Amazon recently purchased the product for $1.1 billion. Basketball star Shaquille O’Neal has also been featured in several commercials for Ring.

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Mission Belt

The Mission Belt is a reinvention of the classic belt design. It eliminates the notches on a belt and instead features a release clasp as the belt buckle to keep it secure. This interesting product comes in a wide variety of colors and styles.

The co-inventors of the Mission Belt, Zac Holzapfel, and Jeff Jensen, pitched their idea on Shark Tank in 2012. Shark Daymond John partnered with the duo and because of that, the Mission Belt has sold more than $25 million worth of belts. The best part: $1 of every Mission Belt sold funds microloans for small businesses in developing countries, therefore adding some philanthropy to the product.

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Tipsy Elves

In the past few years, “ugly” Christmas sweaters have become quite popular during the holiday season. In 2013, the founders of Tipsy Elves appeared on Shark Tank. They pitched their ugly-yet-charming sweaters, and Shark Robert Herjavec agreed to partner with them because of his interest.

Herjavec invested $100,000 for a 10 percent stake in Tipsy Elves. Thanks to that, the business has expanded to sell clothing for most holidays including Halloween and Thanksgiving. In 2015, Tipsy Elves generated more than $10 million. In the years following, Tipsy Elves sales have significantly increased due to exposure from the show. You can even find their clothing, accessories, and other products on Amazon.

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Bottle Breacher

Bottle Breachers are bottle openers that are made from decommissioned .50 caliber bullets. This unique product is handcrafted and designed to support the military. Navy SEAL Eli Crane and his wife Jen operated the business and pitched it on Shark Tank in 2014. 

Sharks Mark Cuban and Kevin O’Leary invested in Bottle Breacher, and sales have continued to climb ever since thanks to that initial investment. They went from earning just $150,000 in sales to over $15 million over the past five years due to Shark Tank promoting their product. A portion of the sales of Bottle Breachers is given to several non-profit military organizations.

Delicious barbecued meat. Credit: Pixabay

Bubba’s Q

Nothing beats a great plate of barbecue. In 2014, former NFL football player Al “Bubba” Baker pitched his boneless ribs on Shark Tank. His innovative cooking process appealed to the Sharks, and he received $300,000 for a 30 percent stake in the business from Shark Daymond John due to his interest.

Before appearing on Shark Tank, Bubba’s Q generated $154,000 in sales. After the show, sales climbed to more than $16 million in 2017 thanks to the show. Bubba’s Q ribs can be found on QVC, at Costco, and were even served by Carl’s Jr. Baker was smart and patented his cooking technique, so he is the only person who can sell deboned and cooked ribs, therefore making him a leader in the BBQ market.

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FiberFix

For certain situations, a stronger tape than duct tape is necessary due to conditions. That’s where FiberFix comes in. This sticky tape is ultra-durable and hardens into a steel-like texture. It’s certified to be 100 times stronger than regular duct tape.

FiberFix creates a watertight and permanent seal, making it ideal for repairing holes, cuts, and divots on a wide variety of surfaces. It can be used to fix broken bikes or leaky pipes. Shark Lori Greiner made a deal with FiberFix founders Spencer Quinn and Eric Child in 2013 thanks to their shared interest. Since then, this innovative product has earned more than $50 million in sales.

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Grace and Lace

In 2013, married couple Melissa and Rick Hinnant appeared on Shark Tank to pitch their women’s accessory business. They created fashionable leg warmers that were designed to be worn under knee-high boots in 2011, and in the beginning, all of their products were knitted by hand. Grace and Lace was given an investment deal of $175,000 by Shark Barbara Corcoran thanks to her interest, which they obviously accepted.

Since being on Shark Tank, Grace and Lace has earned more than $20 million in sales because of the exposure from the show. Their business has expanded to include clothing, hats, scarves, and other accessories. You can find their products on their website, on Amazon, and in several boutiques due to the company’s continued expansion.

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Drop Stop

Everyone has experienced dropping something in between a car seat and the center console. Whether it’s your phone, your keys, a credit card, or cash, losing things in the depths of your car is annoying. Thanks to Drop Stop, that problem has been solved.

A Drop Stop is a log filled with foam that you can wedge between your car seat and the center console. It prevents those drops from happening. This product was pitched on Shark Tank in 2012 by co-founders Marc Newburg and Jeffrey Simon. Since then, more than 2.4 million Drop Stops have been sold, generating $24 million in revenue because of the large-scale exposure gained from the show.

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Squatty Potty

Another major success story from Shark Tank is Squatty Potty. You may think a stool designed to help you have an easier time in the bathroom is silly, but it’s scientifically proven to work. The Squatty Potty helps to empty the colon more efficiently and works wonders for those with constipation. 

Squatty Potty was featured on Shark Tank in 2014 and was given a $500,000 investment by Shark Lori Greiner. Within 24 hours of the show being broadcast, more than $1 million worth of Squatty Potties had been sold. As of 2016, the Squatty Potty had generated more than $30 million in sales.

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Scrub Daddy

Scrub Daddy is considered to be the biggest non-food success story to come from Shark Tank. This cute little smiley face sponge was invented by Aaron Krause, who originally produced it as a pad for cleaning auto mechanic’s hands. He realized it worked well in the kitchen, so he repurposed Scrub Daddy for the home. 

Krause pitched his product on Shark Tank in 2012, and after a bidding war ensued, he reached a deal with Lori Greiner for $200,000 for a 20 percent stake in the company. The day after the episode aired, Greiner and Krause went on QVC to sell Scrub Daddy and sold out all of their 42,000 sponges in seven minutes. To date, Scrub Daddy has the highest revenue of any Shark Tank product as it has earned more than $100 million.

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GrooveBook

GrooveBook appeared on Shark Tank in 2012 and was pitched by founders Julie and Brian Whiteman. Their product was a smartphone app that lets users save social media image posts and have them printed in a customized photo book. Before being on Shark Tank, GrooveBook had about 18,000 paid subscribers.

Sharks Mark Cuban and Kevin O’Leary were interested in the GrooveBook concept and made a deal for $150,000 for 80 percent of the licensing rights. In just five days of their appearance on Shark Tank, GrooveBook saw their sales triple. In 2014, photo service Shutterfly acquired GrooveBook for $14.5 million.

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Chef Big Shake

Chef Big Shake founder Shawn Davis pitched his idea for a shrimp burger on Shark Tank in 2012. He created the shrimp burger patty for his daughter, who was a pescetarian at the time. Davis came onto the show with four different shrimp patties for sale.

He had a hard time appealing to the Sharks and therefore ended up with no deal. That didn’t phase him though, and now his business is booming. He added other things to his menu like chicken and popcorn. Shortly after the show aired, Chef Big Shake was making close to $5 million a year. Davis also has its own restaurant chain in Tennessee.

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Cousins Maine Lobster

Cousins Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselikis were determined to bring the authentic taste of Maine lobster rolls to the West Coast, so they started a food truck business in Los Angeles in 2012. The producers of Shark Tank noticed the Cousins Maine Lobster truck and invited them onto the show. The cousins were interested in getting enough investments to get another one or two food trucks on the road.

Shark Barbara Corcoran invested $55,000 for a 15 percent stake in the company. Since then, sales of Cousins Maine Lobster have exceeded $20 million. The company also sells live Maine lobsters on their website.

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Simply Fit Board

Many exercise products have appeared on Shark Tank, but not all of them have been successful. One success story is the Simply Fit board, which is a balance board designed to strengthen core abdominal muscles. Co-founders Gloria Hoffman and Linda Clark pitched their idea on Shark Tank in 2015.

They paired up with Shark Lori Greiner, who gave them a deal of $125,000 for an 18 percent stake in the company. Simply Fit board was advertised on QVC and sold three semi-trucks filled with the product after just one appearance. You can also find the unique exercise device in Walmart and on Amazon.

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ReadeREST

For those that use reading glasses, the ReadeREST is a must-have product. Invented by Rick Hopper, this device is a magnetic clip that allows you to attach your shirt for safekeeping. The magnetic clip keeps glasses in shirt pockets and prevents them from falling out when a person bends over.

Hopper pitched his ReadeREST product on Shark Tank in 2012. He partnered with Shark Lori Greiner for a deal after she promised him she’d make him a millionaire because of the product’s potential. They went on QVC to sell ReadeREST and sold out completely in 5 minutes. Since being on Shark Tank, ReadeREST has generated more than $27 million in sales.

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Copa Di Vino

Another innovative idea that was pitched to Shark Tank was Copa Di Vino. Copa Di Vino was tossed to the Sharks on two separate occasions by founder James Martin. This product is single-serve glasses of wine that are kept fresh by being sealed. 

On both occasions, none of the investors were interested in partnering with Martin. Luckily, the exposure from being on the show propelled Copa Di Vino to success. The company went from making $500,000 in sales to $5 million. Through 2017, Copa Di Vino had sold approximately 38 million cups of wine. Copa Di Vino is now making more than $20 million per year.

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Kodiak Cakes

Kodiak Cakes is a pancake mix that was pitched on Shark Tank in 2013. This product was intended to be a healthier alternative to pancake mixes like Bisquick as it contained more protein and whole grains. The Sharks were interested, but a deal was never made.

That was due to the fact that founder Joel Clark was unwilling to give up more than 10 percent in equity, so he left empty-handed. However, being on the show was still great publicity for Kodiak Cakes, earning them nearly $54 million in revenue in 2017. It’s now recognized as the fourth-largest pancake mix on grocery store shelves. Kodiak Cakes also sells premade pancakes and waffles in the freezer section.

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Lollacup

Lollacup was pitched on Shark Tank in 2012. The product is a sippy cup for children that is made in the United States and free of BPA and phthalates. It also comes with a flexible straw that makes drinking easier for children.

Sharks Mark Cuban and Robert Herjavec invested in Lollacup together and offered $100,000 for a 40 percent stake in the company. Since being on Shark Tank, Lollacup has had over $2 million in sales. This excellent product can be found on Amazon as well as the company’s website. Lollacup is also sold in more than 300 retail stores.

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BuggyBeds

BuggyBeds is a prevention system for bed bugs that can provide early detection. This product was pitched by Maria Curcio and Veronica Periongo in 2012. This product made history when all five sharks teamed up to invest in Buggy Beds.

The BuggyBeds glue traps are designed to detect the presence of bed bugs before they become a major infestation. This innovative idea appealed to all of the Sharks, so they got together and offered the pair $250,000 for a 25 percent stake in the company. Since being on Shark Tank, BuggyBeds is sold in Home Depot, Burlington Coat Factory, and many other retail locations. Sales have exceeded $1 million.

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Ten Thirty One Productions

Ten Thirty One Productions is an entertainment company that produces live-action horror experiences. This company provides haunted hayrides and horror campouts. More than 100,000 people have been scared by Ten Thirty One Productions since they started out.

Mark Cuban agreed to give the company $2 million for a 20 percent stake. In the years following their appearance on the show, Ten Thirty One Productions expanded to producing events around the country and making $4 million annually. They were introduced to Live Nation by Mark Cuban, who invested in the company around 2015 and now helps them produce their events.

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Wicked Good Cupcakes

Wicked Good Cupcakes is a cupcake company that ships delicious treats in mason jars. Mother and daughter team Tracey Noonan and Danielle Desroches pitched their cupcakes in jars to the Sharks in 2012. Out of all the Sharks, only Kevin O’Leary made them an offer.

O’Leary initially wanted $1 per cupcake sold until he recouped his investment and then 50 cents per cupcake after that. Noon and Desroches settled on 45 cents per cupcake, and a deal was made. Since being on the show, Wicked Good Cupcakes has paid back Kevin O’Leary’s initial investment and now makes more than $2 million per year. They have also opened up several retail locations on the East Coast.

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LuminAID

After the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti, architecture students Andrea Sreshta and Anna Stork invented LuminAID. This product is an inflatable solar item that is designed to provide a source of light in any situation. It’s great for camping, hiking, and working outdoors.

When it appeared on Shark Tank, LuminAID appealed to all five sharks, and they all made a deal. Sreshta and Stork ultimately decided to partner with Shark Mark Cuban, who offered them $200,000 for a 15 percent stake. After being on the show, LuminAID doubled its sales to $2 million. More than 50,000 LuminAID lights have been distributed in over 50 countries that have been impacted by disasters.

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Bombas

When it comes to socks, it’s hard to find styles that are comfortable, breathable, and cushion your feet. Thanks to Bombas, those sock problems have been solved. These socks come in a wide variety of styles and colors.

FoundersRandy Goldberg and David Heath appeared on Shark Tank in 2014. Daymond John made them an offer of $200,000 for a 17.5 percent stake in the company because of his interest and they accepted. As of 2017, Bombas socks have made more than $50 million. For each pair of Bombas socks sold, one pair is donated to a homeless shelter. This remarkable company has given more than 7 million pairs of socks to the homeless since they started this trend.

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Lumio

Lumio is a high-end magnetic lamp that is foldable. It resembles a hardcover book and was created by Max Gunawan, a former architect. Gunawan appeared on Shark Tank in 2015 and impressed all of the Sharks.

The Sharks ended up having a bidding war for Lumio, but Gunawan ended up selecting Robert Herjavec as his partner. They made a deal for $350,000 for a 10 percent stake. Lumio ended up selling more than $3 million worth of Lumio in the two years following its appearance on Shark Tank. Lumio now makes lamps in a wide variety of colors and styles, as well as a mini travel version.

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The Red Dress Boutique

Online women’s fashion retailer The Red Dress Boutique appeared on the sixth season of Shark Tank. Husband and wife team Diana and Josh Harbour came onto the show to pitch their successful online retailer, which had already generated $7 million in sales in three years. They wanted to get help from the Sharks so Diana could start designing her own clothing to sell along with pieces she curated.

Sharks Mark Cuban and Robert Herjavec teamed up to invest $1.2 million for 10 percent equity in The Red Dress Boutique. In just one week after appearing on Shark Tank, the company sold over $1 million worth of clothing. Mark Cuban estimates that The Red Dress Boutique is making him upwards of $500,000 per year.

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Simple Sugars

Skincare company Simple Sugars was pitched to the Sharks by 18-year-old entrepreneur Lani Lazzari in 2013. She began making all-natural skin scrubs as Christmas gifts, and people liked them so much that she turned her creations into a business. 

Shark Mark Cuban invested $100,000 for 33 percent of the business. After appearing on the show, Simple Sugars sold more than $1 million worth of product in its first week. Simple Sugars is sold in spas and on the company’s website. This company has expanded to include one-step skincare products for men with sensitive skin as well as facial and body products.

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Sun-Staches

Sun-Staches are a fun novelty product that was featured on Shark Tank in 2014. Creators and college buddies Dan Gerson, David Levich, and Eric Liberman developed sunglasses with mustaches attached. The idea started as a way to make fun of a friend who couldn’t grow a mustache, so they attached one to a pair of sunglasses. 

The Sun-Stache team paired with Shark Daymond John after he offered them $300,000 for a 20 percent stake in the company. Thanks to their partnership with John, Sun-Staches is sold online, in retailers like Target and Party City, and has a licensing deal with Marvel. In only five months, Sun-Staches grossed $4.2 million in sales.

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Tanglepets

For parents, getting your kids to sit through their hair being brushed after bathing can be a chore. Tangles can keep kids from wanting to use a brush because it hurts. Thanks to Tanglepets, parents can brush their kid’s hair without inflicting pain.

Creator Liz Martin designed a particular hairbrush that was designed to detangle hair and had a small stuffed animal attached. Shark Lori Greiner offered Liz $75,000 for a 50 percent stake in the business. Liz accepted the offer and now has gone from making just $8,000 in sales before Shark Tank to now bringing in $12 million per year thanks to the show.

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Surprise Ride

In 2013, sisters Donna and Rosy Khalife pitched their kid’s gift subscription service on Shark Tank. The idea was for people to be able to gift a box full of goodies and unique activities to the kids in their lives. You can send a one-time box or sign up for a three or six-month subscription.

Initially, the sisters were offered a deal by Robert Herjavec, but after they pleaded with other Sharks to make a deal, he bowed out. After the show, Surprise Ride gained 3,500 new customers in one year. After seeing the success of Surprise Ride, Shark Kevin O’Leary contacted Donna and Rosy Khalife to find out if he could make an investment in the business.

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Tower Paddleboards

In 2012, entrepreneur Stephan Aarstol pitched his idea for Tower Paddleboards on Shark Tanks. His stand up paddleboards are sold directly from him, so they sell for roughly 50 percent less than comparable paddleboards. Aarstol uses search engine optimization to generate traffic to his website as well as sales.

After a shaky presentation, Aarstol accepted an offer from Shark Mark Cuban, who gave him $150,000 for a 30 percent stake in the company. Before appearing on Shark Tank, Tower Paddleboards has sold just $35,000 worth of products. After Shark Tank, they have generated more than $34 million. Mark Cuban says Tower Paddleboards is one of his best investments.

A woman wearing a comfortable hooded sweatshirt. Credit: Pixabay

The Original Comfy

In 2017, brothers Brian and Michael Speciale pitched an oversized sweater/blanket on Shark Tank. The idea behind this product is that it’s a comfortable fleece-lined hooded sweatshirt perfect for curling up on the couch during the colder months. The design of the hoodie ensures that body heat will stay inside, keeping you warm.

The Sharks were impressed by the pitch, but not exactly confident in the product as none of them had been sold yet. They also compared it to the famous Snuggie. The brothers accepted Shark Barbara Corcoran’s offer of $50,000 for a 30 percent stake in the company. After the show aired, the entire Original Comfy inventory sold out. They even appeared on QVC, where they sold out of products within minutes. Bed Bath & Beyond is now selling the Original Comfy too.

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The Bouqs

The Bouqs is an online flower bouquet company. Founded by entrepreneur John Tabis, this company appeared on Shark Tank in 2014. Buying flowers online can be tricky because of delivery charges and added fees. With The Bouqs, you pay a flat $40 fee for every bouquet.

In the episode, none of the Sharks made a deal with Tabis for The Bouqs. That didn’t hurt their sales, however. This company has generated millions in sales in the years following their appearance on Shark Tank. In 2016, Shark Robert Herjavec contacted Tabis to have him create the flowers for his upcoming wedding. After seeing how The Bouqs operated, Herjavec invested in the company.

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Sleep Styler

For those who want to style their hair without using damaging heat styling tools like curling irons and hairdryers, check out the Sleep Styler. Inventor Tara Brown designed the Sleep Styler to curl or straighten hair overnight by styling hair as it dries. It also comes mini sizes for travel and people with shorter hair.

Brown pitched her Sleep Styler invention on Shark Tank in 2017. After speaking back and forth with the Sharks, Tara was set on partnering up with Shark Lori Greiner. Lori made her a deal of $75,000 for a 30 percent stake in Sleep Styler. Tara countered with 25 percent, and Lori accepted. Since being on Shark Tank, Sleep Styler has made more than $100 million.

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Lovepop

Lovepop co-founders Wombi Rose and John Wise appeared on Shark Tank in 2015 to pitch their business. This company designs and sells beautiful pop-up greeting cards. The couple uses CAD software to create the cards which lay completely flat, and the sculptures pop up when the card is open.

Rose and Wise pitched their company to the Sharks and were met with mixed reviews. They ended up making a deal with Shark Kevin O’Leary for $300,000 for a 15 percent stake in Lovepop. Lovepop now makes over 20,000 cards per month with 100 unique designs. Since they launched, Lovepop had made more than $80 million. 

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Bantam Bagels

You know what they say, the best bagels come from New York City. Husband and wife team Nick and Elyse Oleksak decided they loved bagels so much that they wanted to change the way bagels were eaten. They designed mini bagel bites with cream cheese already stuffed in the middle. 

During their pitch on Shark Tank in 2015, all of the Sharks loved the Bantam Bagels concept and the flavor of the bagel bites. In the end, Shark Lori Greiner made them an offer of $275,000 for a 25 percent stake in the business. With help from Lori, Bantam Bagels are in 400 Starbucks locations and available on Delta Airlines flights out of New York City. You can also find them in your local grocery store. Bantam Bagels sold to T. Marzetti Company for $34 million, but the Oleksaks still run their original Manhattan store.

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PRX Performance

As we’ve mentioned before, many exercise-related products have appeared on Shark Tank, but not all of them have been successful. One of the successful exercise products to be featured on Shark Tank is the PRX Performance. Founders Erik Hopperstad and Brian Brasch pitched their weightlifting racks that fit in just 4 inches of space in a home or commercial gym.

After pitching the idea for PRX Performance to the Sharks, Hopperstad and Brasch accepted a deal with Shark Kevin O’Leary for $80,000 for a 20 percent stake in the company. Once the episode had aired, traffic to their website increased more than 3,000 times. Since PRX Performance launched, it has generated more than $19 million in sales.

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Sand Cloud Towels

In 2017, Bruno Aschimanini, Steven Ford, and Brandon Leibel appeared on Shark Tank to pitch their idea for Sand Cloud Towels. These fresh towels are fashionable, comfortable, and environmentally friendly. Also, 10 percent of the proceeds made from Sand Cloud Towels are donated to organizations that protect marine wildlife.

Sand Cloud Towels had made more than $2.4 million in sales before appearing on Shark Tank. They ended up making a deal with Shark Robert Herjavec for $200,000 in exchange for a 15 percent stake in the company. Traffic to their website increased exponentially after the episode, and they were on track to earn more than $7 million from sales of Sand Cloud Towels. They also planned to donate $1 million to marine preservation non-profit organizations.

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