Shark Tank Round-Up

Highlights and Stats From the Hit TV Show

<i>Shark Tank</i> Round-Up
August 26, 2015

Forget who has talent, who is an idol, who has the voice, and who can dance. We want to know who has the best new product ideas.

The reality TV show Shark Tank debuted in August of 2009 to help find those new entrepreneurs. Potential inventors bring their new product ideas to a panel of potential investors, or "sharks," seeking the capital to bring their ideas to reality. Shark Tank forces potential entrepreneurs to assess the weak points in their products or business plan honestly and have an answer to address them; otherwise, they will be "eaten alive" by the sharks — leaving chastened and without funding.

The show will be entering its seventh season in September. In its first six seasons, the Shark Tank has spawned a number of products as well as crushing a number of dreams. Here are some facts and figures about the sharks and their investment decisions.

(Statistics are current through Season 6, episode 20, nine episodes short of completion, using data complied by Statisticbrain.com from ABC, Forbes, and Business Insider. Stats from other sources are noted.)

  • Total Investments – The total dollar value amount invested by the sharks was over $53 million ($53,263,000 with nine episodes to go). Mark Cuban is the top-investing shark with $18 million, even though he only joined the show full-time in Season 3. Robert Herjavec is in second place with just over $10 million invested, and Barbara Corcoran comes in third with $6.47 million invested.

  • Deals – Almost 300 deals (297) have been accepted. As you might expect, Mark Cuban leads in the number of deals with 61. However, Lori Greiner is second with 51 deals even though she is also a newcomer (joining in Season 4).

    At first glance, Kevin O'Leary appears to be the toughest nut to crack, with only 32 deals even though he has been a shark for all six seasons. However, a graphic from Entrepreneur shows that O'Leary is tied with Lori Greiner for combined successful and unsuccessful pitches at 31% of pitches. Maybe he is being "out-sharked" by the other sharks. O'Leary does hold the record for the largest investment at $2.5 million for 10% equity in Zipz Wine, a single-serving wine product.

  • Success Rate – Around half of the pitches end in a deal, but 35% of those fall apart during the follow-up due diligence phase. That does not necessarily spell doom for the product. Lori Greiner's deal for Plate Topper, a more convenient means of storing leftovers, fell apart during due diligence but inventor Michael Tseng still managed to build the product into a $10 million business through affiliations with Wal-Mart and QVC.

  • Successful Businesses – Of the products that have been pitched over the years, the leader of the pack is the Scrub Daddy, a cleaning product that changes its firmness with water temperature. Lori Greiner invested $200,000 for 20% equity, and the company made $18 million in its first year after airing.

    Other largely successful products include Breathometer, the portable breathalyzer attracting all 5 sharks with a $650,000 investment returning $10 million in the first year; Readerest magnetic eyeglass holders with sales of $8 million on a $150,000 investment; and Tower Paddle Boards, with $5 million in sales on a $150,000 investment.

  • Funding/Equity – If you want to succeed, be prepared to give more equity and ask for less money. According to Entrepreneur, the average successful deal netted around $184,345 in exchange for a 26% equity position. Failed deals were seeking $290,000 in return for a 19.6% stake on average. They declare the "perfect shark bait" as a food and beverage product with $450,000 or more in sales and seeking no more than $185,000 for no less than a 25% equity stake.

  • Strange Products – There are downright amusing pitches, such as the Uroclub that allowed desperate golfers to urinate in a reservoir in the club handle instead of killing the bushes at the local country club. However, two of the strangest are probably the Drive Suit that made you a real life transformer, converting into a vehicle capable of around 12 miles per hour, and the Sullivan Generator, which proposed to use the Coriolis effect of the rotation of the Earth to make electricity from salt water, as well as produce salt and precious metals.

Do you think you can swim with the sharks? If you have a world-beating concept and/or product for the sharks to consider, give it a try. Make sure you do your homework, set up a proper business plan, seek the right balance of funding and equity, and prepare for the back and forth of negotiation. With luck and perseverance, you'll have the next Scrub Daddy and not the next Sullivan Generator.

  Conversation   |   29 Comments

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Sara | 08.26.15 @ 14:08
I would say I am surprised that there is so much money with Shark Tank. But hey if it gets good products or ideas out I am okay with it.
Britt | 08.26.15 @ 14:09
I have never seen this show, but it sounds like they are doing a pretty decent job if they're going into the 7th season
Elaine | 08.26.15 @ 14:19
The amount of money they invest in some of these products really don't surprise me. What surprises me is those who come on basically just wanting to get their product on air for some "free advertisement." I think those people are obvious they do not want to make a deal with a shark.
Daniel Dohlstrom | 08.26.15 @ 14:23
I really enjoy this show, not only the personalities but some of the ideas that are brought on are great .. and some make me sit and wonder I should really have thought of that .
Bobbie | 08.26.15 @ 14:36
I do not have any great ideas, but I like how the platform gets new ideas out here, even if they do not attract a shark, they might catch the eye of another investor watching the show.
Rindy | 08.26.15 @ 14:56
I have loved this show from the beginning. I have always been interested in business and new ideas for making money. This show has taught me even more in this field of business.
Christina | 08.26.15 @ 14:57
Shark Tank is a great opportunity for unknown inventors to get the word out about their product and provide a bit of entertainment for the rest of us while doing so
Crystal | 08.26.15 @ 14:57
I LOVE this show! And have even considered trying to get on there!
Nancy | 08.26.15 @ 15:01
I've never seen the show, but it is nice that inventions have a place to be seen and inventors have a place to go for help. I wonder how much the inventors are compensated for just appearing.
Sarah | 08.26.15 @ 15:12
I have only ever heard the name of this. It's interesting, that's for sure. That sure is a lot of money they're floating though. Boggles the mind...
Angie | 08.26.15 @ 15:13
I've only seen a few episodes, but it is apparently holding the public's interest if it's still going strong after so many seasons. If only I had an invention...
Erin | 08.26.15 @ 15:16
I've never watched the show, but if it's helping people realize some of their dreams then it's better than 99% of the other 'reality' shows out there.
Kamie | 08.26.15 @ 15:28
I love Shark Tank, and I know things are hyped for the drama part, but at the same time, they are keeping it real with inventors. And there were some where I yelled at the screen that they all made a dumb mistake..... But, what do I know, I am not a multi-millionaire co-starring on this show. Haha!
Victor | 08.26.15 @ 15:35
There is so money in this its incredible, this is a great article with a very good insight in the show
Blake | 08.26.15 @ 15:36
I've never seen the show but it sounds like something I might like. Somebody has to help these people get their ideas off the ground. Obviously they only go with ideas that people will actually buy so nothing too crazy will, end up on the market through them
gracie | 08.26.15 @ 15:46
I am often surprised at how much money some of the products have already managed to earn on their own individual hard work and steam before they arrive to Shark Tank it shows a lot of dedication and hours bringing their ideas to life. I am not surprised that many of the "deals" go on to make a substantial profit. That is the whole idea of business and the show right?
Beverly | 08.26.15 @ 16:31
We used to faithfully watch Shark Tank. It's not a bad show and it is interesting to see some of the products. Some of them are quite ingenius!
Zanna | 08.26.15 @ 16:31
We watch this show periodically, and it's amazing what people will come up with. Some of the deals sound great, but a lot of times the sharks seem to want a lot more for their investment.
Katie Greene | 08.26.15 @ 16:36
At least if the people can't convince them to invest, they can still have someone see the episode and have a chance at investment. There have been some really neat ideas on there
Christina | 08.26.15 @ 16:39
I have never watched this show. Now that I have read this I will be..
Steffanie | 08.26.15 @ 16:39
I like how this show works and have seen some good products flourish because of it.
trish | 08.26.15 @ 16:49
People look at products all the time and say "Why didn't I think of that?" or "OMG I totally had this idea!" Shark Tank allows for those that do, get it done. Its amazing how much money is thrown around on that stage, but to hear how much they make from backing a product, it is not hard to see why!
Crystal | 08.26.15 @ 17:22
I haven't seen the show. But I may take the time to watch it.
Chelsey | 08.26.15 @ 17:34
This show always makes me go why didn't I think of that. I envy these peoples creative minds! Oh and I love the scrub daddy!
Heather | 08.26.15 @ 17:36
I always love watching this show to see some of the inventions they come up with. Some of these people are pure geniuses!
Andrea | 08.26.15 @ 17:40
It's an ok show, if you like these types of shows.
Alec | 08.26.15 @ 18:16
I saw an episode or two of this a while back. It's a really fun show if you're in to business and money type stuff. I was sorry to see some of the ideas get passed on when I thought they were good or the inventor was too greedy and wanted more money for startup than the Sharks were willing to give. I had no idea it was still on, honestly.
Apryl | 08.26.15 @ 20:42
Definitely pretty interesting!
Jackie | 08.26.15 @ 21:45
I've never seen the show but it sounds like a great idea. Inventors meeting investors. It seems every day there is something new gadget coming out.
$commenter.renderDisplayableName() | 12.05.16 @ 20:53
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