The van life world is super popular, but converting a van yourself can be expensive, time-consuming, and requires a lot of know-how. Entrepreneurs David Sodemann and Brett Ellenson sought to fix this problem with their camper van sales and rental company. Will the sharks love this Season 11 pitch? Find out in our
Shark Tank Boho Camper Vans Update
- Entrepreneur: David Sodemann and Brett Ellenson
- Business: Camper van sales and rentals
- Ask: $300,000 for 10% equity
- Result: $150,000 cash & $150,000 as a line of credit for 10% equity
- Shark: Barbara Corcoran
Boho Camper Vans was started by David Sodemann and Brett Ellenson. David rented a camper van in Maui and came to the conclusion that this was a missing opportunity in the US. With the rise of the ‘van life’ lifestyle, it was the perfect time to get started. Two months after returning, they’d finished their first van and rented it out when they weren’t using it.
Soon, they weren’t able to use it as it was rented out too often! They figured they needed more vans, so they started making more vans. Instead of using new fans, they find used cargo vans and convert them themselves. The vans have running water, an outdoor shower, and an insane storage system. The sharks climb aboard to witness how cozy the vans are for themselves, and Lori Greiner is especially impressed.
The numbers speak for themselves. Vans aren’t terribly expensive to create—about $20,000 to make after they purchase one. However, they rent it out for $200 a night, and one van can pay for itself in about eight months of rentals. Plus, they sell the vans as well and about half of the vans they’ve sold are permanent residences for their new owners.
They’ve done $493,000 so far in the filming year, with a projected $800,000 by the end of the year. The only problem, they say, is with manufacturing. They want to get the process down to prefabrication to speed conversion along.
The sharks sense a great deal, and immediately start haggling. However, Mark Cuban drops out first as he doesn’t think that it’s a great fit for him.
Guest shark Rohan Oza is the first to make an offer, but he wants more equity. He offers $300,000 in exchange for 25%, and he is not interested in haggling. Before they can respond, Barbara Corcoran makes an offer. They need cash, of course, so she offers $150,000 in cash and $150,000 as a line of credit for 10% equity.
Kevin O’Leary, ever the opportunist, cuts in with his version of a credit deal. He offers them $300,000 as a loan, with a 9% interest rate over two years, and 7% equity in the business. However, the entrepreneurs are proud of being debt-free, so they say they’d rather avoid an offer that includes debt.
After being talked over a few times, Lori puts herself forward with a deal. She offers $300,000 for 20% equity but says that she wants to donate part of their revenue to the homeless for every van sold. The entrepreneurs ask if she would drop down to 15% equity, and she refuses.
In the end, they have to make a decision. Despite the debt-free offers on the table, they decide to take Barbara’s offer. It’s exactly what they asked, but with half of the money as a line of credit. Was this a good deal for Barbara? Keep reading our
Boho is actually doing fairly well, even if the pandemic hit their business hard. Still, they seem to have recovered somewhat, especially as people are itching to get out of their homes. You can find more information about their new builds and programs on the company website.
During research for our Boho Camper Vans update, we found that there was an update during Season 12 of the show. Here, the entrepreneurs explain that 2020 was a year full of orders for them, though rentals didn’t do so well. However, they are on track to do over $2 million in sales in 2021.
You can find the other company updates from Season 11 Episode 16 here:
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Andrew Smith is the founder and owner of Shark Tank Recap. He is a longtime Shark Tank fan that has been watching it for years and has seen every episode multiple times. His friends know him as the Shark Tank expert, because he can answer any question about the show! His favorite Shark Tank products are Bertello's pizza oven and Bug Bite Thing!