biggest shark tank deal

The 4 Biggest Shark Tank Deals Of All Time To Inspire You

Elena Hudgens
By Elena Hudgens 18 Min Read

Shark Tank is a reality show that offers entrepreneurs the chance to pitch their ideas in front of a panel of aspiring investors. The show has been on for over 10 seasons and has highlighted some amazing success stories. In this article, we will discuss the 4 biggest shark tank deals of all time. 

It gives us an inside look at what it’s like to create and pitch your own business idea to a group of investors. And with nearly $200 million in funding given out, the show has become a key stop on the entrepreneurial journey.

Knowing how to pitch your product or service is crucial if you want to get on the show. But what happens when you don’t make it past the audition round? Well, there are still ways to get your product out there and make a name for yourself. 

In this article, we’ll give you an inside look at the biggest Shark Tank deals of all time.

 From TUMI’s $1 million deal to become an investor in the company to Gary Vaynerchuk’s $575,000 deal for Wine Library TV, some unreal stories shaped people’s lives. 

Step inside the Shark Tank

The show has been on for over 10 seasons and has highlighted some amazing success stories. There is a reason why people flock to the show: so they can hear about the best deals of all time!

One of the most significant deals was when Gary Vaynerchuk got $575,000 for Wine Library TV in season 4. He was an early-stage investor who had invested $15,000 in the company, but he knew it had the potential to be much more than that. It was one of the biggest shark tank deals of all time. 

When Shark Tank came around, he knew it was his chance to invest while its value was still relatively low. It really paid off as Wine Library TV is now worth over $30 million.

Wine Library TV isn’t the only big deal that has happened on Shark Tank. TUMI became an investor in one of its competitors after Chris Sacca offered them $1 million in 2013 as long as they agreed to use TUMI handles instead of their own product’s handles which they did just this past year.

Today we’ll be looking at some of the biggest Shark Tank deals of all time. Our research includes information about the company, its deal, and its founder. 

Here are the 4 biggest Shark Tank deals of all time that might inspire you!

1. Daymond John’s FUBU

FUBU stands for “For Us, By Us.” The name also serves as a mantra for Daymond John, the founder of FUBU. He grew up in Hollis, a predominantly black area of Queens, and understood that most clothing brands weren’t speaking to an urban audience.

The idea for FUBU was birthed when John saw the response his friends and family had to his own designs, which eventually led him to launch an apparel line with his younger brother Jafar and close friend Keith Coe.

Despite almost going bankrupt because of production issues just one year into their venture, they stuck to their vision and succeeded. Today, FUBU is worth over $250 million dollars. Here’s how it all happened…

1991: The founding of FUBU

Daymond John, who grew up in Hollis, Queens, founded FUBU in the early-to-mid-1990s. The name FUBU stands for “For Us, By Us.”

He and some high school friends had a similar idea to launch a clothing brand, but John took the idea further and actually started a business. At the time, there weren’t many clothing brands that focused on urban customers, and John saw an opportunity to become a leader in the industry as a result.

He was also inspired by the fact that Russell Simmons’ clothing line, Phat Farm, was one of the few brands that served this market. He’s quoted as saying that the idea for FUBU was “born out of necessity.” John partnered with his younger brother Jaffar and high school friend, Keith Coe, to launch the brand.

The three friends were all entrepreneurs already, but they decided to launch FUBU together to create a company that would become a household name.

1998: FUBU’s biggest year

In 1998, FUBU had a huge year in terms of sales. The brand saw around $350 million in revenue, which was by far its biggest year.

During this same year, the brand also received an investment from The Gap of $46 million, which allowed FUBU to open its own factories. The brand is at its most popular FUBU saw its biggest growth in the early-to-mid-2000s.

By 2003, the brand was on the strength of its core garments, but it also had a handful of other merchandise, including bags, wallets, and even perfumes. There were also FUBU-branded stores popping up worldwide.

The brand’s merchandise was available in department stores like Macy’s, Nordstrom, and Kohl’s, but it was also sold in smaller boutiques and flea markets. Notably, the brand even had a line of children’s clothing and toys, which was unusual for a growing apparel company at the time.

2003: FUBU’s decline and resurgence in the mid-2000s

As the decade progressed, FUBU’s growth slowed. Though the brand still had a ton of success, including an endorsement deal with NBA star LeBron James in 2003, it wasn’t the same as it had been in previous years.

The brand’s merchandise didn’t change much, and John indicated that he regretted not innovating with new designs and concepts. The brand is still worth $250 million, though, and it’s used by thousands of customers.

In fact, it’s still one of the most recognizable apparel brands in the world. FUBU has since expanded to include items like sleepwear and loungewear, which the brand is currently promoting in a few TV ads starring John and other celebrities, including Gabrielle Union, Jamie Foxx, and Ciara.

2008: The end of FUBU as we know it?

There was some speculation in 2008 that FUBU was nearing the end of its run. Though the brand still had plenty of popularity, it certainly wasn’t as hot as it had been for the majority of the decade.

John also admitted that FUBU had neglected to innovate in a meaningful way, which led to the brand falling out of favor with the masses. As a result of this, the brand’s sales slowed significantly.

FUBU is still around today, though, and John is still the company’s founder and CEO. He’s indicated that the brand is working on new designs and concepts, which suggests that it’s ready to re-establish itself as a top-notch apparel company.

And it was yet one of the biggest shark tank deals of all time. 

2. The Scrub Daddy

In the seventh season of ABC’s hit show, viewers were introduced to Hamilton, Bermuda-based company Scrub Daddy who pitched their product that helps people clean virtually anything more efficiently.

The Sharks weren’t convinced, though, and all five declined to invest. However, not every pitch on Shark Tank results in a rejection from the Sharks.

Sometimes they see potential in an inventor on how to improve their product or service so much that they are willing to partner with them as their first investor. This was exactly the case with Scrub Daddy who managed to get two out of the five Sharks investing in them.

How Did Scrub Daddy Go From Shark Tank Rejection To Success?

Scrub Daddy first pitched its product on Shark Tank in 2013. They were looking to secure $150,000 in exchange for 10% equity in their company. Their product was already selling well and was earning $3 million in annual revenue.

The Sharks weren’t convinced and all five declined to invest. Scrub Daddy left the Tank empty-handed, but they soon found success without having to go back to the Tank. Discovery Channel contacted the company and flew the owners to New York City to film a segment for Dirty Jobs.

Their appearance helped boost sales for Scrub Daddy as people who saw the episode began buying the product. Scrub Daddy soon entered department stores which gave them better exposure and allowed them to reach a wider audience.

They also started licensing their product and hired a PR company to promote it. Scrub Daddy hit the shelves at Wal-Mart, Target, and Bed Bath & Beyond.

Why Did The Sharks Turn Down Scrub Daddy?

It’s hard to say why the Sharks didn’t invest in Scrub Daddy when they were so successful after being rejected on the show. There are a few reasons why an investor might reject a pitch on Shark Tank though. People who are pitching on the show aren’t professional presenters. 

In fact, most of the contestants don’t have any experience in sales or marketing. The Sharks want to invest in companies with a strong leader who knows how to run a business.

Julie, Scrub Daddy’s charismatic founder, and inventor wasn’t able to convince the Sharks that she was that person. She didn’t seem to be aware of the challenges that come with running a business either. She wasn’t prepared for the Sharks’ questions and didn’t have a good answer for how she was going to scale the business.

The Scrub Daddy is a large, colorful, and convenient sponge that makes dishwashing manageable. After selling his product on the show and raking in $2 million of funding, creator Aaron Krause was invited to appear at the Consumer Electronics Show and then opened up subsequent investment opportunities on Shark Tank.

Scrub Daddy Now

Scrub Daddy is now one of the most successful companies to come out of Shark Tank. They’ve expanded their product lineup and currently sell 20 different products ranging from bath bombs to stain removers. Their products can be purchased at major retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Kroger which is also one of the greatest shark tank deals of all time. 

Around the time that Scrub Daddy was pitching on Shark Tank, they were selling their product through infomercials and door-to-door sales. Their appearance on the show allowed them to enter the wider market and sell their products to a wider audience. The Scrub Daddy product has grown so popular that it’s even used on the basketball court by NBA stars like James Harden, Blake Griffin, and Kevin Durant. And it was yet one of the biggest shark tank deals of all time. 

3. Kevin O’Leary’s, O’Leary Financial Group

When Kevin O’Leary was on the show for the first time, he pitched his company as a digital stockbroker. He wanted to create a company that would allow people to buy stocks without knowing how they work and without any experience necessary. The other investors were interested enough to give him $1 million for 20% equity.

With this deal, O’Leary Financial Group went from 0-60 in about two minutes, and it has been growing ever since. Now, Kevin is worth over $400 million and continues to grow at an impressive rate! And with the help of Shark Tank, his company continues to be a success. And it was indeed one of the biggest shark tank deals of all time. 

4. Robert Herjavec’s House of Bargains 

Robert Herjavec is no stranger to Shark Tank. He’s been on the show over five times and has invested in companies like Tresata, Tiqets, and Emergen-C. But Herjavec has made one of the biggest deals of all time with House of Bargains so-called the biggest shark tank deals of all times. 

GoBargainBuy offers deep discounts on major brands like Nike, Ralph Lauren, and Adidas. The website was founded by a single stay-at-home mom who wanted to save her family money. 

So what did Robert invest in? 100% of the company! If you check out the GoBargainBuy site today, you’ll notice that it looks a little different now; that’s because House of Bargains is now just called “Shark Tank Deals.” You can still shop for big-name brands at discounted prices, but you can also find deals from other companies featured on Shark Tank!

No Shark Tank? No Problem! 

We’ve all heard the saying, “If at first, you don’t succeed, try again.” And this sentiment rings true for some of the most successful entrepreneurs in our world. Some of the most well-known Shark Tank deals happened after a pitch that didn’t make it past the audition round.

For instance, in an episode in season 4, Kevin O’Leary offered to invest $250,000 in exchange for 25% equity in My Baby Rocks—a business that makes personalized baby shoes with parents’ child’s names on them. However, they declined his offer because they didn’t want to give up a quarter of their company.

Fast forward two years and My Baby Rocks had gone out of business. Yet Kevin O’Leary still remembers this deal with fondness because he actually invested in another company with the same owner: Rockin’ Green Laundry Detergent.

Another example is when Lori Greiner invested $100k for a 50% equity stake in Purse First Aid Kit. A woman was annoyed by how dirty her purse usually became and wanted to develop a strategy to safeguard her belongings from spills or leaks.

It took Purse First Aid Kit four years before they finally made their deal with Lori Greiner and sold over 1 million kits! The above were some of the biggest shark tank deals of all time. 

Conclusion

Sharks are some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world. They know how to sniff out a good deal, and they know how to play to win.

But, being successful on Shark Tank doesn’t just happen by accident. It takes a lot of preparation before you even set foot in the tank.

The above were some of the biggest shark tank deals of all time. The show’s producers are always on the lookout for the next big deal. So if you’re like most people and want to get a taste of what it’s like to be a shark, here are a few pointers to help you get ready for your next appearance!

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Posted by Elena Hudgens
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Elena Hudgens is an entrepreneur with 10+ years of experience. She started her journey by building her own e-commerce website on Shopify and turned her $1000 savings to millions in just 2 years. Soon she started different ventures in which she failed and succeeded. And now, she's on a mission to help other entrepreneurs with her life and business lessons.
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