Shark Tank Christmas-Unwrap These Amazing Holiday Inventions!

Shark Tank Christmas-Unwrap These Amazing Holiday Inventions!

Date: December 24, 2017

Sharks looking to invest: Robert Herjavec, Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O’Leary, Mark Cuban, Lori Grenier


Happy Holidays Sharks and Sharkettes! If you were too busy carving Turkeys and unwrapping presents to catch up on Shark Tank, have no fear! We have the recap of the Pre Christmas episode right here!

 

The Comfy

Comfy? You will be if Brian and Michael Special have their way. The Special Brothers came to Shark Tank to introduce Comfy, the sweatshirt blanket. It’s okay to admit it; on cold mornings, you’ve considered wearing your blanket to work. (If you can’t stay in bed, bed may as well come with you!) The Comfy is a one-size-fits-all, oversized, reversible, fleece lined sweatshirt that feels like a blanket, no matter where you wear it.

Model wearing the Comfy as seen on shark tank, in blue.

Asking Investment Terms:

$50k for 20%

Product Positioning

Have you ever met a human being who doesn’t like a blanket? While it’s one-fits-all size might be a little large for some wearers, the Comfy is a great product for anyone of any age. While it is reminiscent of the Snuggy, the Comfy has the added appeal of portability making it more enticing to consumers.

What the Sharks Said

Lori agreed with us that the Comfy is similar to the Snuggie-maybe a little too much. She suggested that with so many similar products saturating the market, the Comfy might not be unique enough to stand out. Mark suggested that the Comfy’s product life cycle may be too early on, jeaopardizing the brother’s cash flow while they work out the kinks.

How We Would Have Helped

We were shocked to see that the Special brothers hadn’t created a website for the comfy yet. They mentioned that since the product is so far away from officially launching, they didn’t see the need for one, but we think a website could help in that respect. Creating a buzz before a product launches is essential to boost sales in that first month. Our marketing team would be able to draft an effective online media campaign to be executed on a website custom built by our graphics and design team, in conjunction with social media.

Conclusion

Robert admitted that he had never seen a Snuggie but he subscribes to the philosophy that numbers don’t lie. $22 million dollars in sales was enough to convince him to take a leap on the Comfy, offering a bid of $50k for 50%. Barbara immediately offered the same $50k for 30%. (She and Robert had been in whispered talks of a partnership and he was now hanging her out to dry.) Barbara shut down the brothers’ efforts to renegotiate for 25% but they accepted the original offer when Kevin dropped out, leaving no alternatives. $50,000 is definitely a comfy sum in our book!

 

The Christmas Tree Hugger

An artificial Christmas Tree might seem like the best option for those who don’t want the hassle of sweeping up pine needles after the holidays. For Ryan Kenny, the trouble saved doesn’t compensate for the lack of aesthetics. The post at the bottom of artificial trees looks noticeably, well, fake. Due to this, Ryan created the Tree Hugger, a decorative covering that can be slipped over the bottom to conceal it and create a more festive look.

Image of the Tree Hugger, as seen on shark tank

 

Asking Investment Terms

$110k for 20%

Product Positioning

Everyone likes to look at pretty things and the Christmas Tree Hugger is cute enough to appeal to anyone with an artificial tree. However, since the bottom of the tree is usually obscured by a mountain of presents, it may not be a big enough problem for consumers. As a result, it may make it difficult for the Christmas Tree Hugger to establish itself in the market.

How We Would Have Helped

The Christmas Tree Hugger is an adorable novelty product, that much is true. The problem lies with the fact that once a consumer has purchased it, there is no reason for a repeat purchase. Ryan’s primary focus should be to create some sort of additional revenue flow with other products.For instance, our engineers could help him develop refill strips of velcro designed specifically for the Christmas Tree Hugger. When the original strips wear out, customers would be able to purchase new ones directly from Ryan’s company, increasing brand loyalty.

What the Sharks Said/Conclusion

Lori dropped out early, stating that the Tree Hugger isn’t a product that will appeal to the masses, making it difficult to market. Robert quickly followed suit because he simply didn’t like the product. Finally, Barbara dropped out after praising Kenny for taking the bold initiative of going directly to Kroger to secure a purchase order. In contrast, Kevin decided to show Kenny some tough love and tell him to take the product “behind the barn and shoot it”. (His words…definitely not ours!) Mark also encouraged Kenny and his salesmanship, even if he wasn’t a fan of the product. All five Sharks ended up taking a hard pass but Kenny wasn’t phased; as a salesman, he said that having thick skin is “part of the secret”.

RokBlok

Logan Riley from San Francisco came next to talk to the Sharks about RokBlok, a portable, one-product replacement for vinyl records, turntables, speakers and pre-amps. RokBlok looks like a run of the mill Bluetooth speaker…until you turn it on. Sit the Rok Blok on top of a vinyl record, put the needle down and watch it come to life. The Rok Blok glides around the surface of the record, wirelessly delivering crisp, clear sound. Did we mention it’s motion activated? Instead of hitting the stop button, simply wave a hand to end the track.

The Rok Blok, as seen on Shark Tank.

Asking Investment Terms:

$300k for 15%

Product Positioning:

The Rok Blok definitely categorizes as a niche product from the onset. The bottom line is that the majority of the population gets their music fix from digital downloads and streaming services. The good news for Logan is that there is definitely an audience for this kind of thing. Retro products with a tech-facelift like the Nintendo Classic have a loyal following and the Rok Blok fits nicely into that category.

How We Would Have Helped:

Logan’s idea is a graceful melding of tech and old-school music that produces a one-of-kind product. However, the truth is that not very many people use vinyl records these days, making it an extraordinarily niche product with a small target audience. Our marketing team would brainstorm with Riley to come up with a creative marketing campaign targeted at audience most likely to use this product. A guerilla marketing campaign with record-shaped bumper stickers left on people’s windshields sounds like a lot of fun!

What the Sharks Said:

Rok Blok is an amazing idea but Mark made an excellent point-in today’s digital era, how many audiophiles have stacks and stacks of records just sitting around? Since most people are able to carry thousands of songs in their pocket, no one is too likely to run out and buy vinyls for the sole purpose of using the Rok Blok. Mark and Barbara both agreed that as a business and a product, RokBlok is too early in the game-and they both dropped out.

Conclusion:

While he doubted Logan’s valuation, Kevin displayed a little more confidence in Rok Blok. He made a generous offer of $300k for 50% of the company which prompted something we’ve never seen before. Robert offered Logan the chance to sell him the entire company for $500k, with the additional offer of a 2-year job contract, plus a royalty of $5 per unit sold. A company buyout and on the spot job offer? We never saw that coming! Logan knows a good opportunity when he sees one and he pushed play on the half a million deal without hesitation. Congratulations Logan!

 

Modern Christmas Trees

Tech and tradition again came to a head when Matt Bliss showed up with his product, Modern Christmas Trees. Modern Christmas Trees are a minimalist art-deco take on the age old tradition of…well, actual Christmas trees. Matt’s version of the time-honored trimming is composed of concentric collapsible rings that can hang from a wall or ceiling to expand to the full size of a regular tree. Built-in LED lights reflect off of the beautiful glass bulbs included with each tree to create a multi-faceted, luminous tree display.

Modern Christmas Tree in blue, as seen on Shark Tank.

 

Asking Investment Terms:

$100k for 10%

Product Positioning:

There’s no escaping it, this product should be aimed at those with comfortably lined pockets. Modern Christmas Trees are a glamorous and luxurious take on the real thing and they should be marketed as such. Luxury hotels and

How We Would Have Helped:

Before shipping, Full-sized Modern Christmas Trees retail for about $800. Consumers might not spend that much on something they’ll only use for a couple of months every year. The real cost is associated with the beautiful glass bulbs included with every tree. Each tree comes with 96 clear glass bulbs that, while beautiful, may not be necessary. In order to decrease production costa and increase profitability, Matt would need to break down and streamline his production model to identify where he might be able to save money on manufacturing. We might suggest that he offer the product a la carte with the option to purchase bulbs separately.

What the Sharks Said:

Beautiful but expensive, was the general consensus. Right off the bat, Kevin stated the obvious: most families don’t have $799 to spend on a premium Christmas tree. Mark agreed, saying that he didn’t see the company scaling at a sustainable rate and both sharks pulled out. Even Lori, a self-proclaimed sparkle lover, balked at the sky-high price point.

Conclusion:

Although things were looking precarious at first, Matt wasn’t completely hung out to dry. Barbara swooped in with an offer of $100k for 25%, to be paid back at $5 a sale, prompting Kevin to make the same offer for 20%. After a quick bit of haggling, Matt and Barbara agreed on a reasonable 18% for $100k with the additional $5 royalty. ‘Tis the season, indeed-that sounds like a great deal to us!

With the New Year approaching it’s a great time to take advantage of after Christmas sales and stock up on some of these items for next year! What do you think Shark Fans? Will you buy a Modern Christmas Tree or just put a Christmas Tree Hugger onto your old one? Whatever you choose we at Idea Buyer hope you enjoy the rest of the holiday season!