16 ‘Shark Tank’ Products That Are Now SO Successful
If you haven't watched Shark Tank yet, you're missing out on one of the most interesting reality television shows on right now. For those who are unfamiliar, the show features aspiring entrepreneurs who make business presentations to a panel of five investors (the "sharks"). The investors then decide whether they are going to invest in the business idea or not. While the show presents a lot of amazing ideas and innovations, obviously not all of them can become a reality. Of course, some of the products or companies never really make it off the ground, but in some cases, these items become incredibly popular. Certain Shark Tank products are now so successful that it's hard to believe they came from a television show.
Some of these products have become so popular that you might not even realize they got their start on Shark Tank. These could be items that you use all the time without knowing their history, which is pretty fascinating. It's also kind of inspirational to see how well some of these products do - it's a corny little reminder that if you really go after your dreams, then maybe you too can get on a television show and make them come true. In all seriousness, though, it is very cool to see these products go from just an idea to a full-fledged success.
Below are some of the biggest products that have come out of Shark Tank so far. They'll definitely make you want to spend some money!
1. Scrub Daddy
Scrub Daddy Scratch-Free Sponge, $9.99, Amazon
Scrub Daddy is probably the most successful product to come out of Shark Tank. Inventor Aaron Krause got a $200,000 investment in the smiley-faced sponge, and through 2017, has sold more than 10 million sponges with $50 million in sales.
So what's so special about this particular sponge? The texture and function changes as you adjust the water temperature. In warm water, it acts as a traditional sponge. With cold water, though, it gets more firm, allowing you to use it for deeper stains without scuffing or scratching anything. Oh, and the adorable little mouth part that makes it look like a smiley face isn't just for show - it makes it easy to clean hard-to-reach items like silverware or cups. The sponge is also odor-free (seriously) and very easy to clean, so it doesn't need to be tossed all the time.
Women's Tri-Block Ankle Sock, $12, Bombas
Bombas are another everyday item that became wildly successful: socks. In Season 6, Bombas were introduced, and one investor gave the cofounders $200,000 to get started. One of the things that makes the athletic sock company stand out is that they donate a pair of socks to a homeless shelter for every pair sold.
Another thing that makes Bombas better than your average pair of socks is the extra-long staple cotton that makes them breathable, the extra cushioning that keeps them comfortable, and the genius blister tab, which protects the back of your ankle from getting cut up. The founders once said they had sold $400,000 worth of socks in four days after their television appearance, and Business Insider says that the company made $50 million in 2017. Pretty impressive!
3. Squatty Potty
Squatty Potty, $24.99, Amazon
In Season 6, Shark Tank viewers were introduced to the Squatty Potty, which pretty much became an instant success. It's basically just a plastic stool meant to be placed under your feet to help you poop better. And it's not just a gimmick: there's science behind it. Studies have found that people who use the Squatty Potty regularly have an easier time making bowel movements. Doctors told Time that squatting while going to the bathroom puts the body at a 90 degree angle, which "gets us closer to how we're 'supposed' to have bowel movements." They're especially ideal for people who have irritable bowel syndrome or chronic constipation.
According to Mental Floss, the company made $1 million in product less than 24 hours after the broadcast, and in 2016, topped $30 million in sales.
4. Tipsy Elves
Women's Happy Birthday Jesus Sweater, $49, Tipsy Elves
Who knew ugly Christmas sweaters could be so popular? In 2013, Tipsy Elves co-founders got a $100,000 investment in their company, which features ugly sweater designs. The founders, Evan Mendelsohn and Nick Morton, came up with the line simply because they were having trouble finding ugly Christmas sweaters online. There's no real gimmick to them, either, they're just silly sweaters.
Still, that has proved to be very profitable. According to Business Insider, they sold over 5,000 in their first year in business. By 2018, they had done over $70 million in sales and sold over two million products. Today, Tipsy Elves sells a whole lot more than just Christmas sweaters.
5. Bubba's Q Boneless Ribs
The Ultimate Bubba's BBQ Pack, $99.99, Bubba's
In 2014, former NFL player Al "Bubba" Baker pitched Bubba's-Q Boneless Baby Back Ribs. He got a $300,000 investment, and then went on to do $16 million in sales in 2017. Why were these ribs so popular? They marked the first time someone could buy boneless ribs online, something that apparently was missing from the market. Baker was inspired by his wife, Sabrina, who didn't like eating ribs because they were so messy. He figured out a way to debone them after they were cooked, then reheated them so they could be eaten quickly and easily. He patented the idea and then it got big.
Today, they're sold on QVC, at more than 5,000 retail stores, and even in Yankee Stadium. Baker also got a deal with Carl's Jr. and Hardee's.
6. Drop Stop
Drop Stop, $19.99, Amazon
The Drop Stop is one of those inventions you think of out of nowhere and wonder why it wasn't created yet... then think that if you had access to something like Shark Tank, you could definitely make it happen. Well, someone did exactly that, and it worked.
The Drop Stop is a foam-filled log that fits in the crack between a car seat and center console, so that if you drop anything there (which, let's face it, you usually do), it doesn't disappear into the depths of your car. Since their appearance on the show, co-founders went on to sell 2.4 million Drop Stops with $24 million in revenue.
7. Wicked Good Cupcakes
Two-Pack Cupcakes In Jars, $20.95, Wicked Good Cupcakes
In Season 4, a mother-daughter duo from Boston went on Shark Tank with the idea to make cupcakes in a jar. They came up with the idea when looking for an easy way to ship the cupcakes they were baking. It was a simple concept that really took off, especially after a TSA agent confiscated them as a "threat to national security" before their appearance on Shark Tank.
Since appearing on the show, these cupcakes, called Wicked Good Cupcakes, have expanded and gotten new locations. Investor O'Leary said it was his most profitable investment of the show, and the company began to make about $4.8 million annually.
8. Simple Sugars
Avocado Facial, $19, Simple Sugars
In Season 4, 18-year-old Lani Lazzari pitched skincare company Simple Sugars, and made a deal with Mark Cuban for $100,000. Within 24 hours of the premiere, sales went from $220,000 to $50,000 and then hit $1 million six weeks later.
What makes Simple Sugars different is that it is all-natural skincare dedicated to very sensitive skin. Lazzari came up with the idea because she was struggling to find skincare she could use that wouldn't irritate her eczema - and she was only in high school when she created the line! Simple Sugars fill a void in the beauty world that many never even really thought about.
Groovebook is an app that allows users to print up to 100 photos off of their phone and make them into a custom monthly photo book - and it's super inexpensive, at only $3.99 per month with free shipping. The idea was that people take tons of photos on their phones every single day, but they rarely get them printed or do anything with them at all. Groovebook would make it easy to print them - basically as easy as it gets. You can also tear them out easily, as the pages are perforated.
After their appearance on Shark Tank, according to TechCrunch, the company went from 18,000 paid subscribers to 500,000. In 2015, they sold for $14.5 million to Shutterfly.
Classic Lumio, $200, Lumio
In Season 6, Max Gunawan pitched a foldable, magnetic-lamp company called Lumio on Shark Tank, and got a $350,000 investment. In 2015, Lumio made $3 million in sales and won a host of awards.
Why do you need a lamp that folds? To put it simply, it's durable, simple, modern, and great on battery life. It's also just a very cool design. When not opened up, the Lumio looks like a hardcover book. Opening it halfway makes it look like an open book with the pages fanned out, while opening it all the way makes it look like a round light. You can hang it or place it on a table, making it versatile and fun to play around with.
Stainless Steel ReadeREST, $10.99, ReadeREST
ReadeREST is another one of those brilliant ideas you'll wonder why you didn't think of first. Who hasn't lost their reading glasses after putting them down somewhere without really thinking about it? These were created by Rick Hopper after years of frustration from misplacing his reading glasses, and the product is a small magnetic pocket filler that allows glasses-wearers to clip their glasses to their shirt when needed. The clip keeps glasses from slipping out of a pocket and breaking, and helps keep them right on hand.
Since appearing on the show, ReadeREST has unsurprisingly been very successful, and they've made over $27 million in sales.
12. Kodiak Cakes
Kodiak Cakes Power Cakes, $18.78, Amazon
Kodiak Cakes are basically nutritious pancakes or waffles. The flour-based mix is created with more whole grains and proteins than most grocery-store brands out there, meaning that pre-mixed waffles and pancakes don't have to be unhealthy.
While the product was featured on the show in 2013, it wasn't that successful: the owner, Joel Clark, didn't get any investments. He did get a lot of attention, though, and went on to eventually get $54 million in revenue in 2017 Kodiak Cakes are now the fourth largest pancake mix on shelves. Proof that sometimes just the exposure alone can be enough to make a product successful!
13. Cousins Maine Lobster
One pound lobster meat, $99, Cousins Maine Lobster
Who doesn't love a delicious Maine lobster? They're known for being fresh, huge, and basically perfect... unfortunately, you have to be in Maine to get one. Or do you? In 2012, two cousins, Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselikis, started Cousins Main Lobster food truck in Los Angeles to bring an authentic Maine lobster roll experience to the West Coast.
On Shark Tank, they got a $55,000 investment, which helped them grow considerably and led to sales of more than $20 million. Now you can even order live Maine lobsters from their website. There are 20 trucks nation-wide and even a restaurant in LA.
14. Grace and Lace
London Lace Boot Cuffs, $15, Grace and Lace
In 2013, Grace and Lace appeared on Shark Tank, which led to a $175,000 investment by Corcoran. Now, Grace and Lace, owned by couple Rick and Melissa Hinnant, has grown from $1 million to over $20 million in sales.
The company makes clothing, but what is really popular for them is their lace extenders. The extenders, made for skirts, dresses, and boot cuffs, make it look like you're wearing socks under your boots. They solve that annoying problem many experience when socks bunch up under boots, fall down, or just feel uncomfortable. The extenders give the look without the bulk.
Video Doorbell, $99.99, Ring
You've likely heard of Ring, a super popular doorbell camera that often seems to be everywhere. Well, it got its start on Shark Tank in 2013, but CEO James Siminoff didn't get any investments. However, earlier in 2018, Ring was sold to Amazon for $1.1 billion! Amazon even paid for Shaquille O'Neal to be a pitchman for the product.
Ring is a doorbell-camera hybrid that acts as security for any home. It gives customers a peace of mind because they can see what's going on outside of their home when someone comes up to the door.
Lollacup, $16, Lollacup.com
The Lollacup was created by couple Mark and Hannah Lim, who wanted to produce a cup that allowed toddlers to drink with a straw - but many toddlers have issues with straws. They came up with the Lollacup as a safe and healthy way for toddlers to use a straw and got funded by Cuban and Robert Herjavec.
The straw is nearly spill-proof, easy for transitioning, and easy for cleaning. It has a weighted end that keeps it in the liquid, even if the cup is tilted. The handles are easy for toddlers to hold, but can also detach, and there's even a straw-cleaning brush that comes with it to really make sure it gets clean.
This article was originally published on August 27, 2018 and was updated on September 4, 2019.
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