Friday, April 26, 2013

Fun Friday: Wanna be on Shark Tank?

Shark Tank. Now in its fourth season, the series airs on Friday nights at 9pm (but sometimes 8pm) ET/PT. I remember the publicity for the series before it debuted, and I just wasn't really interested. Part of me didn't care because many of the items people would peddle on the show wouldn't likely get anywhere. Another part didn't care because, here in Silicon Valley, people are constantly pitching their latest start-ups, products, and ideas. If you go to a library or a coffeeshop or a park, I bet you can throw a stone and hit someone who is dying for a big break. I'm not even an "ideas (wo)man" and I've been to a few Meetups where Angel Investors and Venture Capitalists truly want to hear what you're up to, as they might buy into it. But, about six months ago, my husband and I were home on a Friday night and flipped through the channels, stumbling upon Shark Tank. We watched the remainder of the episode and kinda liked it. Not enough to stay home on a weekend to watch, but liked it nonetheless. By November we decided to DVR the show and have been catching it here and there ever since.
Being an "ideas man," my husband was more curious about the process of going in front of the sharks than I was. (I have a lot of beef with the way this show does things, actually, but that's a different post.) So, I looked up more about the show and found the application, and I wanted to share some interesting bits about it, should you have a budding business that could benefit from the help of the sharks. (oh, and be aware that the competition is pretty stiff... over 30,000 people applied last year!)

- You have to list your education. Now, I'm a big believer in institutes of higher learning, but I find it a little curious, as some of the best ideas out there have come from kids with barely a GED.

- You have to list all of your other television appearances. I guess because they don't want attention-seekers? Why would it matter that I've been in the audience for The Tonight Show? If I had won a car on The Price is Right, fine, but I feel like some things shouldn't matter.

- In the "business details" section, you get six lines to describe your business/product, but only three lines to describe the market for it. I think I'd need more than that!

- You should describe "any records or logs kept with respect to your development of your business" like business plans and timelines. If possible, provide copies. Again, I'm not an inventor, per se, but doesn't that sound kind of personal? Or is that typical?

- And, my favorite part... If you get tired of reading or don't read every line, you'd miss that, halfway down on the very last page, you must agree to giving ABC/the Finnmax LLC producers 2% of your business's operating profit royalties OR 5% equity in your business. It's up to the Shark Tank Entities, and they can choose to take neither, but you have to accept the loss if they decide to take the option. The option "shall vest only upon the occurrence" of going into business with a shark within two years of presenting or after the episode airs. Oh, AND it goes for other businesses you have, too. So, be careful or keep quiet or wait on those.

Anyone still want to try to pitch to the Sharks?
Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Email This Pin This

No comments: