Zip String is a toy that allows users to operate a device that moves a string around safely at 35 miles per hour. Austin Hillam and Stephen Fazio came to
Shark Tank Zip String Update
- Entrepreneurs: Austin Hillam and Stephen Fazio
- Business: String Toy
- Ask: $100,000 for 10% equity
- Result: $100,000 for 20% equity
- Sharks: Robert Herjavec and Kevin O’Leary
Austin and Stephen told the sharks that Zip String had gone viral with tens of millions of views, but unfortunately, they had only sold 10,000 units at an average of $25 per unit.
They also launched a Kickstarter campaign that ran successfully, but the sharks were puzzled at how a viral marketing campaign could only lead to such a small amount of sales. Austin and Stephen explained that manufacturing had been an issue when the product went viral, and they weren’t able to support the demand. However, those issues had since been fixed and they were now capable of handling large orders.
This was enough to interest Kevin O’Leary and Robert Herjavec. Robert Herjavec offered up $100,000 for 10% equity, which is exactly what Austin and Stephen had asked for. Kevin O’Leary was also interested and undercut Robert at $100,000 for 9%.
Eventually, Kevin and Robert decided to team up and offer $100,000 for 20%. In fear that this offer would evaporate, Austin and Stephen quickly accepted. With two sharks on their team, let’s take a look at our Zip String update.
The Zip String toy will undoubtedly be a great gift for kids during any holiday season, and the airing of the episode just before Christmas should help with short-term sales.
In terms of longevity, adding Kevin and Robert to the team will give the toy a major boost in awareness, and they’ll likely be able to help increase its social buzz. Only time will tell how it will hold up in popularity over time, and we will let you know in our next Zip String update!
For more information, be sure to check out the Zip String website.
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