Articles on this Page
- 10/31/16--10:36: _The CEO of a highly...
- 11/02/16--10:00: _'Shark Tank' star K...
- 11/05/16--13:43: _Barbara Corcoran sh...
- 11/07/16--08:05: _Barbara Corcoran sa...
- 11/07/16--14:00: _Barbara Corcoran sa...
- 11/10/16--10:43: _Watch billionaires ...
- 11/11/16--12:15: _Billionaire Chris S...
- 11/17/16--10:17: _How to become a mil...
- 11/18/16--05:47: _Barbara Corcoran sa...
- 12/01/16--10:31: _Watch 'Shark Tank' ...
- 12/08/16--12:26: _4 important lessons...
- 12/13/16--08:25: _Mark Cuban to 'Shar...
- 12/15/16--08:56: _This Silicon Valley...
- 12/30/16--03:09: _Barbara Corcoran sh...
- 01/03/17--09:19: _A perfect SAT could...
- 01/06/17--06:37: _'Shark Tank' star B...
- 01/13/17--08:14: _Watch 'Shark Tank' ...
- 01/18/17--08:35: _'I'm going to be hi...
- 01/20/17--12:32: _The best advice 'Sh...
- 01/25/17--10:21: _This guy turned his...
- 11/05/16--13:43: Barbara Corcoran shares her best career advice for 20-somethings
- 12/13/16--08:25: Mark Cuban to 'Shark Tank' scam artists: 'I'm gonna crush you'
- 01/20/17--12:32: The best advice 'Shark Tank' investors have given entrepreneurs
A few years ago, during "Shark Tank" Season 5, Mark Cuban took a risk and invested $2 million in Melissa Carbone's horror attraction company Ten Thirty One Productions.
It was by far the biggest investment for the show at the time, and remains one of its largest. But it's paid off.
Founded in 2009, Ten Thirty One was built on its flagship LA Haunted Hayride, which it brought to New York City last year. These two attractions, combined with an interactive experience called the Great Horror Campout, are scheduled to bring in $5 million in revenue this year, according to Fortune.
"The ultimate long-term goal is to have a Ten Thirty One attraction in every major metropolitan area in the United States," Carbone told Business Insider in 2014.
Cuban has admired Carbone's ambition from the beginning, but he gave her a piece of advice from the start of their partnership that Carbone said became embedded in her head: "Don't drown in opportunity."
"Because after 'Shark Tank' I guess it's common for a lot of those companies to start getting inundated with emails from people who want to partner with them," Carbone said.
She said that she's always been the type to jump at every big opportunity that came her way, but Cuban's advice has helped her grow as an entrepreneur.
"I think about that every single day, because sometimes you have to cut some opportunities loose, and it's a little painful," Carbone said.
She's taken the advice seriously, and has selectively made partnerships, like this year's tie-in with the Universal Pictures film "Ouija" for the LA Haunted Hayride, and is steadfast in her long-term goal of taking over the American horror attraction market without letting her ambition stretch beyond her capabilities or vision.
As Cuban wrote in his 2013 book, "How to Win at the Sport of Business": "If you are adding new things when your core businesses are struggling rather than facing the challenge, you are either running away or giving up. Rarely is either good for a business."
"What does it cost you to be alive?" If you don't know the answer, you could be headed for a financial trainwreck. If not now, probably soon, Kevin O'Leary says.
When it comes to his own money, the shrewd, sharp-tongued "Shark Tank" star has long managed it meticulously, even when he was a shy kid growing up in Montreal. The young "Mr. Wonderful," now a silver-haired 61, carefully scrimped and saved a percentage of every dollar he accrued, whether earned or gifted. And the multimillionaire mutual funds magnate still does.
Recently, on the set of "Shark Tank," we asked the frugal finance whiz what he thought the worst money mistakes people make were and how to best avoid them. Here's what he said:
The mistake: Spending on 'crap' clothing you won't wear
"Most people buy more crap than they use. This includes men and women alike, especially when it comes to clothes. They love the feeling of clothing shopping, but the truth is, if you actually look at your closet, you probably wear the same 20%, 80% of the time, and the rest of the stuff you bought is wasted."
The solution: Invest in high-quality clothes and wear them out
"If you're going to buy clothing or fashion accessories, make it something really good that's going to be timeless, that you're going to spend a lot of money on and spend a lot of time thinking about, and that you're actually going to use. Save your money and put it toward quality items and be very selective. It'll pay off in the long run. I wear the same suit every day. I have 20 of them, so I don't have to worry about my style anymore. I travel with four at a time and I burn them out then I throw them out or give them to charity."
The mistake: Not knowing your monthly nut
"What I find so remarkable, and this includes very wealthy people I know, is nobody knows what they're monthly nut is. Whether you're single, married, a single parent, or otherwise, most people don't know what it costs them to live every 30 days, and that's living on the edge."
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Barbara Corcoran was only 24 years old when she left her waitress job in Fort Lee, New Jersey, to sell real estate across the river in Manhattan.
She had no background in real estate, but her hotshot new boyfriend told her she'd be a natural marketer and had to give it a shot. Their relationship and business partnership would not survive, but Corcoran took her half of the company they founded, The Corcoran Group, and turned it into one of Manhattan's premiere agencies before selling it for $66 million in 2001.
Later, she became a television personality and has been one of the "Shark Tank" startup investors for the past seven years.
This unpredictable course of events defined her worldview.
"I think the best time to take a risk at anything, including leaving your job and starting your own business, is the moment you think about it," Corcoran said in a recent Facebook Live Q&A at Business Insider's New York office.
A viewer asked her for advice for weighing graduate education against jumping into one's career.
"I weigh it simply, in a practical sense," Corcoran said. If you want to be a lawyer, get a law degree; if you aspire to a high-level position on Wall Street, get an MBA. The important thing is to consider how that student loan debt is going to affect your life once you graduate, and if that burden is truly necessary, she explained.
"I think the important thing is to ask yourself, 'What's going to make me happy?'" she said. It's difficult to find that answer when you're young and so you have to approach it "the same way we find out what clothing looks good on us: Try a lot on."
This embracing of risk is how in her early 20s Corcoran realized that even though she had bachelor's in education, her natural ability to connect with people and her eye for design meant she was perfectly suited for the real estate industry. In your 20s, she explained, you need to be willing to experiment with your career.
"You just have to try on a number of jobs to see what gets you excited, and that's where you want to go," she said. "And more often than not, you're not going to find that in a classroom."
Watch the full Facebook Live Q&A:
Barbara Corcoran is an American businesswoman and investor on ABC's "Shark Tank". She founded the NYC real estate company The Corcoran Group which has made her one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the country. She's known Donald Trump for several years. When Business Insider interviewed her in January 2016, she gave us her insight as to why he has been so successful.
Follow BI Video: On Facebook
Corcoran, now best known as one of the stars of "Shark Tank," built her fortune and reputation with the Corcoran Group, which she established as one of New York's premiere real estate firms.
In 1983, Trump oversaw the completion of Trump Tower in Manhattan, and had established himself as a force in the industry. Corcoran, who was 34, was intimidated by him.
She recently stopped by Business Insider's New York office for a Facebook Live Q&A, and though she didn't want to get into politics, she brought up a story about the Republican presidential nominee when a viewer asked how to deal with fear of failure.
"I still doubt myself. I'm ashamed to admit that after all these years," Corcoran said. But when she's afraid, a "tape reel" starts playing in her head, drowning out a negative inner monologue. While she may be best known for the way she freely speaks her mind, she said that in her 20s and early 30s she was very insecure.
A turning point came in the early '80s, when Corcoran notified Trump that his Trump Tower residential properties, which he was advertising as the most expensive condominiums in the world (this was back when such a claim was appealing), were actually in the bottom tier of the top-10-most-expensive list she was about to publish. As soon as he got the message, he called her to his penthouse office.
"I was scared to death in that mirrored elevator going to the top floor of Trump Tower," Corcoran said. "Thinking that bad voice: 'Oh, my God, what did I do this for? I'm in hot water. What am I going to do?'"
She willed herself off the elevator and stepped into his office, into a small chair that seemed to shrink beneath his giant desk.
Trump was furious, she recalled, and he was yelling and gesturing wildly. Mid rant, "all of a sudden I got the first inkling of that tape: 'Oh, yeah? You're not talking to me like that,'" she said.
"One of the most memorable and treasured moments of my life — it sounds so stupid how you treasure these things — but was when I got up out of that mini chair he stuck me in, went over to his side of the desk and had the courage to put my hand on his shoulder and look over his shoulder."
Trump was thrown off, she remembered, and the power dynamic shifted into her favor. She presented an idea to him: If she changed the way she was measuring "most expensive" (she couldn't remember the specifics, but it was something like price-per-room versus price-per-square-foot), then Trump could rightfully take the No. 1 spot he so desperately wanted.
They agreed to a deal where Trump would be able to advertise his properties with this tagline as long as he included the Corcoran Group's branding on all advertising.
"I got paid very well for finding the voice and the courage within me that day, and I've been practicing it ever since," Corcoran said.
Watch the full Facebook Live Q&A:
Silicon Valley billionaire Chris Sacca returns to "Shark Tank" for the first time 0n Friday's episode airing at 9 p.m. on ABC.
Business Insider has an exclusive preview of the episode.
In it, Sacca — who, through his venture capital fund Lowercase Capital, was an early investor in companies such as Twitter, Uber, Instagram, and Kickstarter — gets into a sparring match with fellow billionaire Mark Cuban.
Cuban interrupts Sacca as he's challenging a man's claims about his product that's intended to make house hunting easier. And Sacca doesn't appreciate Cuban's interruption.
In fact, Sacca believes that battling with Cuban is one of the biggest reasons he's on the show.
"I see my role on the show as keeping Mark honest," Sacca recently told Business Insider. "I’ve known him for years. The nature of our friendship is ball-busting. And I feel almost like that’s what I’m there to do, is bust Cuban’s balls for all those who are at home watching who can’t do it from home, but really want to."
Watch Business Insider's exclusive sneak peek at Friday's new episode of "Shark Tank" below:
Chris Sacca is back on ABC's "Shark Tank" on Friday for the first time this season. And if you've seen the previews, you know that he and fellow billionaire Mark Cuban will be going toe-to-toe again.
"I see my role on the show as keeping Mark honest," Sacca, 41, recently told Business Insider. "I’ve known him for years. The nature of our friendship is ball-busting. And I feel almost like that’s what I’m there to do, is bust Cuban’s balls for all those who are at home watching who can’t do it from home, but really want to."
That's just part of the reason Sacca signed on to guest for several more episodes this season. After all, he has plenty of entrepreneurs to pitch him — "Shark Tank" or not. He's one of the most sought-after investors in Silicon Valley. Through his venture capital fund Lowercase Capital, Sacca was an early investor in companies such as Twitter, Uber, Instagram, and Kickstarter.
So what is it about "Shark Tank" that makes him want to return?
"'Shark Tank' actually brought me back to my very first days where it was just a couple of guys or gals working on a fun idea, written a few lines of code, maybe had a few users," Sacca said. "The conversation wasn't about the big bucks. It was just about, how do we make this thing better? Can we help each other do that? I really miss that. I realize that despite the success of our business, the passion had sort of fallen out of it for me. And 'Shark Tank' brought me back to why I care about this."
And while Sacca and Cuban may have held an advantage over the other sharks when it came to tech companies on "Shark Tank," Sacca admits the other sharks are nipping at their tails.
"There are some tech companies this season with a very high likelihood of success and you can see the thirst on the panel to own pieces of these companies," he said. "I really do see the sharks evolving their perspective. In the early days of the show, if you brough them an app, they would've turned their noses up. But now they know how indispensable those apps are, even to their own traditional businesses."
Sacca admitted that he has gleaned some lessons from the other sharks as well.
"When someone comes in with a product they want in Bed Bath & Beyond, that's way out of my comfort zone," Sacca told us. "I may be the only shark who hasn't been on QVC, but I have learned a lot from those folks about what it takes to get a product on store shelves."
If there's one thing the stars of Shark Tank know, it's how to make money.
Mark Cuban opened a bar before he was of legal drinking age. The brazen college campus venture lasted six short months. A scandalous snafu with a wet T-shirt contest led to the watering hole’s "sorry end." The former bartender's later business bets -- legal ones, of the tech-related kind -- fared exponentially better, eventually landing him in the millionaire club. Then, not long after, into the three commas club, the realm of billionaires.
Kevin O’Leary came into his first millions after spinning a $10,000 seed investment from his mother into an edtech startup. In not too long, Mattel scooped it up for $3.6 billion. Daymond John stitched a $100,000 seed investment from his mom (who mortgaged her house to give it to him) into FUBU. The fashion startup cleared hundreds of millions in sales within six years.
Chris Sacca’s path to millions -- and later to billions -- is tied to incredibly successful startups, too, though, interestingly, none of his own. He lucked out with some very early and very wise investments in Uber, Instagram, Twitter and Kickstarter, and that’s just the short list.
Lori Greiner spun her love of inventing solutions to everyday annoyances into a multi-million-dollar retail operation. Robert Herjavec, also a multi-millionaire entrepreneur, went from rags to astronomical riches within a few years of emigrating from Croatia to Canada in the pursuit of a better life. And, after failing at 22 jobs, former diner waitress Barbara Corcoran turned $1,000 she borrowed from a boyfriend into a $6 billion-dollar New York City real estate empire that's still going strong.
We recently caught up with all seven Shark Tank star investors on the Culver City, Calif., set of the hit show. There, from behind the scenes of Sony Pictures' Stage 30, they shared their advice on how to become a millionaire. Here’s what they told us:
BARBARA CORCORAN: BE COMPETITIVE AND PIGHEADED
"If you want to be really rich, you better decide early to start a business of your own. It's only when you put yourself in charge that you have a shot at becoming rich.
Every business is born out of an individual's intense passion and a real need to succeed, so you'll need enough passion to get started, but also enough to get through the intense 12-hour days when the chips are down and everything and everyone seems against you. But, if you're competitive and pigheaded enough to get over the failures without wasting time feeling sorry for yourself, and if you can inspire enough good people to join you, you can pretty much become as rich as you want."
MARK CUBAN: WORK HARD AND DO WHATEVER IT TAKES
"There’s being wealthy and doing well and having your dreams come true. And there’s being in a situation where things escalate. Whether it’s me or Chris Sacca, the stock market had gone nuts. I was rich and I was happy, but I don’t know that I’d have multiple billions of dollars.
"To become a millionaire, you’ve really got to find something that you love to do because it’s going to take so much work that you can’t just say, ‘OK, this is the one industry I can make a lot of money in.’ Or, and I get this all the time, which is crazy: ‘I want to be rich. What kind of company should I start?’ You can’t do that. It doesn’t work like that.
"You’ve got to be good at something and not only be good at it, but you’ve got to love it, and then you’re willing to work and do whatever it takes. Then, if you’re fortunate, that turns into something that creates wealth for you.
"I found out I loved computers and I taught myself how to program. I had no problem working 20 straight hours learning something or coding. That led to building and selling my first company. But it wasn’t like, ‘How am I going to get rich? Let me just start that company in that industry’ because there’s going to be somebody who’s going to know that business better than you do and is going to kick your ass."
LORI GREINER: DO WHAT YOU LOVE AND DO IT WELL
"Find something you love to do, that you are passionate about and also good at. Don't have the goal to be a millionaire. Have the goal to be successful and plan to give it all you've got. Critically important, make sure you are hands-on and the one driving things because no one will care about your business like you do. Be involved in all details and be aggressive at attaining your goals, and know how to pivot when necessary."
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
"Shark Tank" investor Barbara Corcoran reminisces about the time early in her career when she went up against Donald Trump and won.
Follow BI Video: On Twitter.
On Friday's new episode of ABC's "Shark Tank," star investor Kevin O'Leary literally skates off with a potential deal.
In an exclusive preview for Business Insider, a trio of entrepreneurs entered the tank to pitch their business, Inboard Technology. They manufacture remote-control electric skateboards. And "Mr. Wonderful," as O'Leary likes to refer to himself, couldn't help but try out the product.
The guys were pretty confident about the safety of their product — they tested it to 1,200 pounds. But that confidence may be their downfall. They made the potentially fatal mistake of leaving the tank to discuss an offer and get a surprise from the sharks upon their return.
Also on Friday's episode, Tech billionaire Chris Sacca returns. Plus, the show has its highest evaluation ever for a business — $40 million.
"Shark Tank" airs at 9 p.m. Friday on ABC.
Watch Mr. Wonderful try one of those electric skateboards below:
Embracing fear and failure is a key component of becoming an entrepreneur; you need to take a leap of faith.
Despite her $80 million net worth and tremendous success as a businesswoman and TV personality, "Shark Tank" star Barbara Corcoran is no stranger to failure.
She received straight D's throughout her academic career and held 20 different jobs by the time she turned 23. But that all began to change in 1973 when she co-founded a real estate business that flourished into an exceptionally successful company.
In 2001, she sold her business for $66 million to NRT Incorporated, the largest residential real estate brokerage company in the U.S.
Corcoran's numerous successes over the past several decades are linked to several key insights and philosophies. She recently compiled an online class entitled, "The Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship: Pitching Your Business and Yourself." The goal of the course is to force people off the fence: to push them either to go into entrepreneurship or to keep their day jobs.
Here are the core philosophies highlighted in the course that all successful entrepreneurs should have:
Corcoran firmly believes that success and failure are irrevocably linked: All successful entrepreneurs know how to fail well and deal with rejection.
Every failure has an equally great upside if you're willing to stay in the game. The first time Corcoran gave a presentation to a large audience, she lost her voice. While many people would have avoided public speaking at all costs after this, Corcoran volunteered to teach a real estate night course at New York University. She decided that she had two choices in this situation: stay in hiding and be embarrassed and ashamed, or learn how to do it right.
The first time I was a guest on a TV show, I had to meditate and prepare for over an hour before I was able to go on set. Even though I felt embarrassed for causing a delay, I was more determined to abide by my conviction to share my knowledge with the world. A few years later, after plenty of practice and self-acceptance, I was able to do over 40 TV and radio show appearances in just two months with very little anxiety.
If I had succumbed to fear, I would have never been able to calmly give a TEDx talk with only a few weeks notice. Embracing and learning from fear has paved the path for me to accept opportunities and continuously pursue my dreams.
Develop immense optimism
In business, optimism is more important than intelligence. Sometimes, being too rational can lead to countless missed opportunities. In my experience, meditation helps start every day with a clear and concise mind.
You have to become hopeful beyond all logic if you are going to be a successful entrepreneur. Based on Corcoran's philosophy, you will need to see everything as half full even when everyone else sees nothing in your glass.
Create pressure and don't overanalyze
You can't always study to be an entrepreneur, you just have to take a leap of faith. When I transitioned from corporate America to entrepreneurship, I jumped in completely. I sold my home in Washington D.C. and bought equity in an existing business. For me, it was just the right time. And the pressure was on because I knew I had to survive on my own.
Corcoran believes that creating pressure is important. She thinks that people under fire react more intelligently than those standing on the outside making careful assessments.
This connects with my previous point that logic can sometimes be more hurtful than helpful. If you wait to discover the best way to do something, you'll be waiting forever. Corcoran doesn't subscribe to the idea that there is a correct time to expand a business. Waiting for all the variables to fall into the perfect place will equal no results and waiting forever.
Fake it until you are it
To be a successful entrepreneur, you need to look and act the part. When I started to go after corporate contracts, I attended events and joined organizations with very successful entrepreneurs because I knew it was best to surround myself with people who I wanted to emulate. Eventually, I began to feel like I belonged in the room.
If you follow this strategy, without even realizing it, you will soon become the part. Insecurity never goes away; even highly effective entrepreneurs like Corcoran say that they struggle with it daily. The difference is that, for Corcoran, insecurity is a motivator.
For example, Corcoran finds that women struggle with insecurity more than men. Part of her solution is to ask herself, "What would a man do?" She acts as her own cheerleader and sometimes even thinks arrogant thoughts to propel herself forward: "I have every right to be here as this guy does; I have the right to be as rich as he is."
Entrepreneurship requires proper planning and successful control over emotional change. Inspirational people like Barbara Corcoran show us that we are not alone in the struggle of successful entrepreneurship. Moreover, failure, pressure and positivity are key components of entrepreneurial success.
On a recent episode of the NPR podcast "How I Built This," host Guy Raz asked Mark Cuban why he could be so, well, mean on "Shark Tank."
Cuban, the billionaire serial entrepreneur who owns the NBA's Dallas Mavericks and is a regular investor on the hit TV series "Shark Tank," answered that he was not always mean — in fact, he said, there's one major determinant of how he acts on the show.
"If there's an entrepreneur who's got their life tied up in something, I'm not going to be mean. I'm going to be supportive, and I'll come up with suggestions, even if I'm not investing.
"But if you're trying to scam me, if you're trying to pull a quickie, or your product's a scam, I'm going to nail you. Because I know that people see these products and they'll go to buy them."
He added: "Those situations, I'm going to crush you."
As an example, Cuban mentioned Pavlok. In the season-seven finale, Maneesh Sethi appeared on "Shark Tank" to pitch the Pavlov wristband, which is designed to help users curb bad habits by shocking them.
During the episode, as Business Insider's Richard Feloni has reported, the sharks argued over the product's validity. Cuban called Sethi a con artist. Ultimately, Sethi turned down an offer from Kevin O'Leary and left without funding.
On "How I Built This," Cuban recalled that Sethi presented research on aversion therapy in general and not on Pavlok's effectiveness specifically.
"I called them out on it," he told Raz. "Why don't you just use a rubber band?"
In a September "Shark Tank" roundtable discussion, Cuban said scam artists made up one of the three categories of entrepreneurs he saw on the show.
For example, as Feloni has reported, in season six, Cuban called Tycoon Real Estate founder Aaron McDaniel "scammy" because he thought McDaniel's business was taking advantage of unsophisticated people.
In season three, Cuban labeled Esso Watches, which is described by its creators as using negative ion technology to improve decision-making and balance, a scam as well.
On the other hand, if Cuban detects that you've put honest effort into building a business, he'll play nice — even if he doesn't plan to invest. "If your heart's into it, and your heart's in the right place, and your effort's there," he told Raz, "I'm going to support you."
Nootrobox, a startup based in San Francisco that makes and sells cognitive-enhancement supplements, or "smart drugs," crashed and burned on a recent episode of "Shark Tank."
Cofounders Geoff Woo and Michael Brandt tried to raise at a $40 million valuation — more than any startup has ever asked for on the show — and left empty-handed. They received brutal criticisms from the show's panel. Woo tells Business Insider it was worth it.
"I think we sort of had our own agenda, in that, we knew that if we [were] going to do an investment, we would treat it as a real transaction," Woo said, explaining that the offer had to be competitive for them to commit.
"We also knew that having a platform to expose mainstream America [to Nootrobox] was well worth the potential backlash."
It appears Woo, the startup's CEO, was right. Since the episode aired, business has been booming. The venture-backed company saw six times more orders in the weekend after they appeared on "Shark Tank" than it did over a weekend in the month prior to the show airing, according to Woo.
Google Trends data shows web searches for Nootrobox and Go Cubes, the company's signature caffeine-infused gummy product, also spiked higher than ever.
Woo and Brandt appeared on the show to pitch Go Cubes. Nootrobox claims the gummy can improve clarity and focus. Its formulation contains L-Theanine, an ingredient in green tea that may cancel out the jitteriness associated with a caffeine buzz.
The company reported $1 million in revenue year-to-date (the episode taped earlier in 2016) and 17% growth month-over-month. Nootrobox has raised $2.57 million to date from top investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Marissa Mayer, and Mark Pincus.
The pair failed to give the story behind the product, however, and dove into the science that makes it unique. The pitch did not go over well.
"I think you guys are flying very close to the sun," Kevin O'Leary said.
"You came in and you gave us sugar cubes," Lori Greiner told them.
Chris Sacca, an early investor in Twitter and Uber and a guest judge on "Shark Tank," also delivered some burns on social media.
This @nootrobox pitch is all over the place. Are they engineering nootropics? Are they biohacking? Are they selling sugar coffee cubes?— Chris Sacca (@sacca) December 3, 2016
So frustrating when a team wastes an opportunity in the #SharkTank. Thousands of companies would kill to be on that carpet. Don't blow it!— Chris Sacca (@sacca) December 3, 2016
Woo says 90 minutes of filming were reduced to a 10-minute segment. The sharks peppered him and cofounder Brandt with questions, talking over each other in the process. Woo says he felt like the sharks were competing for sound bites.
"It was like controlling a classroom of kids," Woo said, adding that he wanted to say, "'I can answer all of these questions, [but] I can [only] answer one at a time.'"
It was brutal to watch. The San Francisco-based company, which was invited on the show by ABC, according to Woo, failed to impress a single shark.
Woo chalks up his awkward "Shark Tank" experience as one step in the evolution of the company.
"Some of the feedback I got from people [was that] the sharks came off as pretty impatient with us. Maybe rightly so. We were asking for a ridiculous valuation," Woo said.
"Shark Tank" investor Barbara Corcoran has spent a lot of time with Mark Cuban. Here are a few things she has learned from him.
Follow BI Video:On Twitter.
Shaan Patel, a 27-year-old entrepreneur from Las Vegas, had an envy-inducing high school résumé.
He was the valedictorian of his class, was crowned homecoming king, and even shook President George W. Bush's hand in 2007 as a White House Presidential Scholar, a program that recognizes two academically gifted students from each state.
He also scored a perfect 2400 on his SAT.
And yet, every Ivy League school that he applied to rejected him: Harvard, Princeton, and a special medical program at Brown. Patel also received a rejection from Stanford.
Rather than allowing these rejections to discourage him, Patel used them as motivation and parlayed his perfect SAT score into a thriving SAT test-prep company, Prep Expert, elevated in large part because of his appearance on "Shark Tank" in January 2016.
"'Shark Tank' was definitely the catalyst behind a lot of our growth at Prep Expert," Patel told Business Insider in October. "To have the exposure to 10 million people in a weekend really made a difference in our company."
While Patel founded the company in 2011, he won the backing of billionaire investor Mark Cuban on the show. The two have now partnered to bring the SAT and ACT prep course to classrooms and online. Patel received $250,000 from Cuban for a 20% stake in his company.
Before Patel went on the show, the company achieved some moderate success, doing about $1 million in sales a year. When Patel went on "Shark Tank," however, sales exploded. Since his episode aired about 10 months ago, the company has achieved $6 million in sales.
"We're doing almost 10 times the sales we used to do," Patel said. "I really believe 'Shark Tank' is the most powerful marketing engine in the world."
Now Prep Expert offers classroom instruction in 20 states across the US and online programming.
Patel's success in business wasn't always guaranteed, though. He spent his formative years in the Sky Ranch Motel, a self-proclaimed budget motel in Las Vegas that his family owned and operated as well as called their home.
"At a young age I saw, like, drug deals and prostitutes," Patel told Business Insider last year.
The motel is a source of embarrassment for his mother, he said, but Patel embraces it and doesn't try to downplay its existence in his life.
Ivy League rejections
When Patel applied to colleges, he had high hopes for acceptance into the Ivy League. But soon the rejections started to pile up.
"I do think that Asian-Americans have a disadvantage applying to college," Patel said.
Patel, who is Indian-American, was referring to both his own rejections as well as recent news stories about Asian-Americans who say they face discrimination in college applications. In fact, some admissions officers acknowledge that Asian-American applicants may have a harder time getting into top schools, as they may fall into a group of peers with relatively high test scores.
Not one to dwell on disappointments, Patel took a spot at the University of Southern California on a full scholarship.
At USC, he pursued a joint bachelor of arts/doctor of medicine program that had always piqued his interest. In high school, Patel's volunteering in the emergency department of a hospital developed into a passion for medicine and the desire to become a doctor.
The joint-degree program at USC offered a way into medical school and ensured he'd be able to realize his dream of becoming a practicing physician.
More disappointment before finding success
Patel has always been the type of person who embraces having a full plate.
"I like being busy," he said.
But "busy" seems to be a bit of an understatement.
After finishing his undergraduate studies and nearing the start of his first year in medical school, Patel wrote an SAT prep book to help students prepare for the exam using the same methods he did. But his attempts to find a publisher were unsuccessful.
One editor even went as far as to give him the brutal feedback that he didn't have an engaging personality and wasn't a great writer no matter how well he scored on the SAT.
Undaunted, Patel used the last of his scholarship money — $900 — to launch his SAT prep website, then called 2400 Expert. He advertised the SAT prep course as the only one taught by a student who earned a perfect score in high school.
The initial course ran during the summer before Patel started medical school and grew exponentially from there. He had only a handful of instructors at the time, but word caught on after his pilot course showed an average improvement per student of 376 points.
Now that the test is scored on a 1600-point scale, the average improvement for students after taking Patel's course is 210 points. That kind of improvement is unheard of in the test-prep industry, according to Patel.
After that first summer, Patel trained qualified instructors and managed the company remotely from California. And more satisfying, McGraw-Hill, one of the education publishing giants, saw the momentum 2400 Expert was gaining and offered Patel a book deal.
Patel's book "SAT 2400 in Just 7 Steps" was published in July 2012.
More college aspirations
While juggling a growing SAT prep business, Patel was also studying for medical licensing board exams and taking on 36-hour surgical rotation shifts at the hospital. He still loved the medical profession, but was also highly interested in learning how to scale and grow his business.
In 2014, he decided to take a two-year leave of absence from USC to pursue business school at Yale's School of Management. He credits business school as a major reason for his current success.
"It was the best thing that ever happened to me," Patel said. "If I wasn't in business school, I wouldn't have made that hour-and-a-half trip from Yale to New York to go to that 'Shark Tank' audition."
Patel earned his MBA from Yale in May and has reenrolled in the fourth year of his medical program at USC. Still, his sights are set on continuing to grow Prep Expert, the name his company took on in 2016. He aims to make Prep Expert one of the largest test prep providers in the country.
Those are lofty goals for someone currently applying for a residency programs — in his case, a dermatology residency. Patel, however, has no plans of slowing down, and is currently writing a book with Cuban that teaches kids how to start their own business.
"We want to foster entrepreneurship in kids," Patel said.
"Shark Tank" co-host Barbara Corcoran took a big risk quitting her waitressing job in New Jersey to become a real estate broker in New York City. She had no money or connections, but her gut told her to go, so she did. This is the philosophy that has made her a huge success.
Follow BI Video:On Twitter.
Kevin O'Leary has become the master of thinking outside the box when it comes to deals on ABC's "Shark Tank."
In Business Insider's exclusive preview of Friday's new episode at 9 p.m., O'Leary confounds Vlad Smolyanskyy, the young founder of Pinblock, with a creative offer.
At just 21, Smolyanskyy had moved from Ukraine to Brooklyn, New York to chase the American dream. It's obvious he did his homework. He came to "Shark Tank" with an epic display of his unique block toys and showed an extensive knowledge about the toy industry.
The problem is O'Leary knows the toy industry really well, too. In 1999, he became a multimillionaire when he sold his educational software company to Mattel. His creative offer for Pinblock is based on his experience in the industry and his ability to open doors for the company.
With some advice from the other sharks, will the young man take O'Leary up on his deal?
Watch Business Insider's exclusive preview below:
Kevin O'Leary, an entrepreneur and "Shark Tank" star, announced his entrance into the race to lead the Conservative Party in Canada.
The "Shark Tank" star, nicknamed Mr. Wonderful, announced his campaign in a video posted on his Facebook page after flirting with the idea for months.
He spoke about his background as the child of Lebanese and Irish immigrants and how Canada was the "land of opportunity" for his family.
"That's the promise of Canada. It always has been," O'Leary said. "Somehow, we've lost that. It's been squandered. And there's a reason — his name is Justin Trudeau.
"Today, with you, I'm starting my journey to do something special for him," O'Leary continued. "I'm going to help him find his real calling in 2019 — 'cause it's not running Canada. He doesn't know what he's doing."
O'Leary said Trudeau's "feeling of failure" is "permeating everything" in the country.
"I'm going to be his worst nightmare, but I'm doing it for us — you, me, my kids, yours," O'Leary said.
He likened Trudeau negotiating with US President-elect Donald Trump to "Godzilla versus Bambi" in a November interview after Trump won.
"I think Trump versus Trudeau is Godzilla versus Bambi," O'Leary told the CBC. "It's going to end very badly. You need someone that can negotiate."
With his announcement, O'Leary enters a crowded field to take over for Stephen Harper, Canada's former prime minister, as the leader of the Conservative Party. There are 13 other candidates, including current and former members of Parliament — some of whom have been campaigning since last spring.
He also waited until the morning after the French-language debate to announce his candidacy, meaning the reality-TV star didn't have to participate. O'Leary doesn't speak French, according to the CBC.
O'Leary's campaign will have to scramble to make up for lost time, with the Conservative Party's election five months away, on May 27.
Canada's next federal election is in 2019.
The reality show “Shark Tank” has been helping entrepreneurs live the American dream since its 2009 debut.
Now in its eighth season, the self-made sharks have invested more than $66 million — as of season six — of their own funds to help entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground.
Each week, sharks Barbara Corcoran, Mark Cuban, Lori Greiner, Robert Herjavec, Daymond John and Kevin O’Leary convene to receive pitches from the entrepreneurs in need of cash to get their companies off the ground.
Follow along to read the best pieces of advice the sharks gave entrepreneurs during their stint on the three-time Emmy Award-winning show.
1. Focus on profits
“Follow the green, not the dream.”— Mark Cuban
In season four, Erica Cohen and Lori Barbera, owners of Baby’s Badass Burgers food truck, wanted money to open a brick-and-mortar restaurant. Rather than funding the successful food truck’s transition to a traditional eatery, Cuban advised them to keep doing what’s working. Essentially, he believed the hot-pink, gourmet burger food truck was already a recipe for success and that switching up the plan might put a damper on business.
2. Be accountable for your own success
“A goal without a timeline is just a dream.”— Robert Herjavec
Many “Shark Tank” contestants have been aimlessly working toward their entrepreneurial goals for years. With this piece of advice, Herjavec encouraged them to create a timeline to turn their aspirations into a reality. Attaching specific dates to goals forces them to be accountable and make real progress.
3. When the going gets tough, don’t give up
“As an entrepreneur, you can always find a solution if you try hard enough.”— Lori Greiner
Starting a company comes with a huge set of challenges, but Greiner advised “Shark Tank” contestants not to give up. As creative thinkers, entrepreneurs simply must devise creative solutions to combat every roadblock in their way. No problem is unsolvable — failure cannot be an option.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
In September 2013, Jamie Siminoff went on ABC's "Shark Tank" in hopes of raising $700,000 for his company, DoorBot. He thought it was worth $7 million.
His company made a video doorbell that connected to your smartphone so you could remotely see and talk to the person at the door through your mobile device.
The idea was largely based on the idea that a burglar tends to ring the bell before breaking in. With DoorBot, you could see who is at the door and even pretend you're at home when you're not, making it a convenient home-security device.
Siminoff was already making about $1 million in sales annually then, and he had high hopes of getting one of the TV show's "sharks" in as investors of his company.
But the sharks weren't impressed. One by one, the sharks dropped out, leaving only Kevin O'Leary, also known as "Mr. Wonderful," as the last potential investor.
O'Leary's offer wasn't too enticing. He would offer a $700,000 loan, then take 10% of all sales until the loan was paid off. After that, O'Leary wanted to collect a 7% royalty on all future sales, plus 5% of the company's equity.
Siminoff rejected the offer and walked away with nothing.
"It's that moment when I say, 'You're dead to me because you don't want to take my offer,'" O'Leary told him.
It was a public moment of humiliation, but one that didn't deter the fast-growing Los Angeles company — although it did help Ring rebrand to convey a more serious image.
"We think we got at least $5 million of additional sales through the airing of 'Shark Tank,'" Siminoff previously told Business Insider. "It just absolutely throttled our revenue, awareness in the market from every level. Everything just popped after that."
The company has caught the eyes of both consumers and investors. Its products are now sold in over 15,000 retail locations across 100 countries.
It's that growth that attracted an additional $109 million in a mix of equity and debt from investors including Goldman Sachs Investment Partners and Qualcomm Ventures. The new round brings the company's total investment to over $209 million — a long way from its days of "Shark Tank" rejection.
"Jamie, to his credit, is an experienced entrepreneur. He's playing to win," CRV investor Saar Gur told Business Insider. "He has a very ambitious vision for where the company goes over time."
Gur said he thinks the "Shark Tank" judges at the time didn't get the vision of what the company could become because Ring practically invented a space. Home security was built on the idea that companies would protect you by sounding alarms once the burglar got into the house, Gur said, and Ring kind of "flipped it inside-out."
The company has expanded from doorbells with cameras to a whole line of outside-the-house security. Its latest product is a security camera that has floodlights and a siren in addition to the two-way talk, so you can yell at a burglar and turn on a siren if you see an intruder approaching.
"The idea that I have a siren on my smartphone to scare people away — that's a new product," Gur said. "He's seeing the world is different and inventing products from scratch."
The mega-round of $109 million doesn't put Ring into unicorn territory — companies with billion-dollar valuations — but Gur says not to underestimate how big the company could become.
"Jamie is one of the best entrepreneurs that I've had a chance to work with," Gur said. "I believe in Jamie's ability to constantly innovate, but I'm excited that he's continued to fill his war chest to innovate on this space."