'Shark Tank' Season 14: Pretty Rugged owner gives in to Robert and Lori's offer to escape exorbitant trade show expenses

'Shark Tank' Season 14: Pretty Rugged owner gives in to Robert and Lori's offer to escape exorbitant trade show expenses
Robert Herjavec, Tracy Slocum, and Lori Greiner in 'Shark Tank' Season 14 episode 5 (ABC)

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Tracy Slocum, CEO, and founder of Pretty Rugged, stepped into 'Shark Tank' on October 21 episode to ask for $200,000 for 10% of her firm. Even though she walked away with a deal, she had to give up more than half of what she had previously offered her company merely to decrease costs in one area: trade shows!

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Tracy was inspired to start a luxurious, reinvented business that makes windproof, waterproof, and spillproof faux fur blankets and outerwear accessories by her great-great grandpa, Captain Joshua Slocum. She designed a blanket with a waterproof and windproof side and faux fur on the other. She didn't stop there; she built a whole lifestyle brand around luxury and function, creating things that were built to last. Luxury reimagined, as she told the Sharks!

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Her innovative faux fur blankets are waterproof and designed to feel like real wool. One can wrap it over themselves and sit on a watery surface, such as the beach. She developed the blanket line, and in 2018, she stepped into the Jacob K Javits Convention Center, which was hosting a large New York town exhibit. She'd never gone to a trade fair before. Not only that, but she stepped in with a paper wall and palette table that she had built herself, and she departed having won the best new product and best in the market, as well as being featured on one of Oprah's favorite things within her first year.

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In 'Shark Tank', she is looking for a strategic partner to help her understand and grow her firm. The blankets she displayed to the Sharks ranged in price from $220 to $290. The blankets cost her roughly $36-$40, resulting in margins of around 80%, which piqued the Sharks' interest. Her wholesale margin is around 70%. Her lifestyle sale is slightly over $3 million. Furthermore, her sales were $1.197 million last year, but she only made $32,000, which shocked the Sharks. When asked about her net margin by Shark Robert Herjavec, she acknowledged spending much too much money on trade exhibitions.

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She also mentioned a purchase order that arrived late last year. She also admits to spending $180,000 on trade shows last year. This year, she will undertake 20 trade shows on her own. She also discusses the supply chain issues she has been dealing with in her firm. When she ran out of a product last year, she made the smart choice to place a large buy order for roughly $400,000, which arrived only a few weeks before filming 'Shark Tank.' She receives a 25% discount from Chinese traders.

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Shark Kevin O'Leary returned to Tracy's trade show costs, where she has been spending roughly 20%, delivering her those big sales statistics. However, as an investor, he sees no opportunity for himself because her company's worth is not yet $2 million. As a result, he backs out of the deal. Shark Emma Grede admires Tracy's work, but because she does not believe in faux fur, she declines the offer. Shark Mark Cuban sees inefficiencies in the business and is backing out as well. Sharks Lori Greiner and Robert Herjavec, on the other hand, were intrigued by the margins and believed they could help the firm thrive. However, the Sharks refused to accept an offer of $200,000 for less than 25% of the firm. Tracy attempted to challenge the offer by lowering it to 20%, but the Sharks refused, forcing Tracy to accept the $200,000 fund for 25%.

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'Shark Tank' Season 14 airs every Friday at 8/7c on ABC. Missed an episode? Been wanting to catch up? Episodes can also be viewed the next day on demand and on Hulu. Not just that, you can also watch old seasons and episodes on Amazon Prime Video and iTunes.

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