Robert Herjavec offers Original Stretchlace $100K after backing out, 'Shark Tank' fans call founder 'priceless'
When it comes to 'Shark Tank' investments, the sharks aren't just investing in a product but the entrepreneur themselves. For them, putting in these large sums of their own money requires them to see a person or a team's potential to go beyond just one product and be able to build a brand that can sustain itself and its identity in the long run.
So when the founder of The Original Stretchlace Jamie Montz came in with her idea, a shoelace that stretches, it was for the sharks to decide if they were to take a chance on this one single product, or the woman behind it, who displayed a lot more potential.
The concept of The Original Stretchlace is fairly simple. Although it looks like your normal shoelace, these laces are elastic, allowing you to convert any pair of shoes you have into slip-ins, while still looking like a pair of lace-ups.
Jamie and David Montz came in to 'Shark Tank' asking for $100,000 for 10 per cent equity. Montz explained that they currently retail on Amazon as well as on their own website and that the product hasn't been sold in any physical outlet yet.
Montz's story was not an unfamiliar one. A mother of three, she came up with the idea for stretchlace as a one-time solution to tying shoes. Having previously managed a $35M beauty and lifestyle brand on Amazon, she quit her day job to handle her business full time, taking it from a weekend hustle to her main job. Her husband, on the other hand, works in tech and still maintains his job, but helps with her company as and when he can. The sharks, unfortunately, weren't sold on the concept, with all of them backing out. For Robert Herjavec, building a brand on a '$13 shoelace' was not enough.
However, at the 11th hour, Herjavec suddenly decided to make an offer. For him, investing in a brand with just one product such as The Original Stretchlace didn't make sense. But, he saw Montz's spirit and skill and decided that it was worth taking a chance. He made her an offer for $100,000 for 33 per cent equity. He explained that he was investing in her and not so much the company, seeing that he believes she can help him with other brands while he can help her own.
Montz countered with 25 per cent equity, but Herjavec wasn't having it. Not ready to let go of the offer just yet, she made a final counter offer — $100,000 for 30 per cent. Which Herjavec took rather willingly.
Twitter was glad to see that Montz was made an offer and that she countered it as well. "Incredible episode of shark tank. business is the most noble practice," tweeted a user. "@ABCSharkTank @robertherjavec Smart man! Her Amazon knowledge could be priceless!! I like that you were thinking outside the box there! #SharkTank," added another. "That was like pulling shoelaces but I'm glad they got a deal. #SharkTank," added another. "That final deal came down to the wire... or lace! #SharkTank" said a user.
Incredible episode of shark tank. business is the most noble practice— brendan (@ceilingfan200) May 15, 2021
That was like pulling shoelaces but I'm glad they got a deal. #SharkTank— Phil Lemos (@Phil_Lemos) May 15, 2021
That final deal came down to the wire... or lace! #SharkTank— Ryan Bartholomee (@RyanBartholomee) May 15, 2021
However, not everyone was convinced about the deal. "#SharkTank Robert was hella rude to the Stretchlace woman!So what if she is selling a $13 shoelace? That’s her product! I see he is about to offer a deal probably bc he realized how snarky he was to hern #Stretchlace Great idea!" said a fan. "But then on the flipside some of the Sharks will be like, I'll give you $100,000 for a 30% stake/equity. Yeah, ok Sharks. Go ____ yourself. Me & my invention will walk. Thanks! Lol! #SharkTank," tweeted a fan.
#SharkTank Robert was hella rude to the Stretchlace woman!So what if she is selling a $13 shoelace? That’s her product! I see he is about to offer a deal probably bc he realized how snarky he was to hern #Stretchlace Great idea!— LILLY KEESHER (@Lkeesher22) May 15, 2021
But then on the flipside some of the Sharks will be like, I'll give you $100,000 for a 30% stake/equity. 🙄— Cereka Cook (@therealcereka) May 15, 2021
🤔 Yeah, ok Sharks. Go ____ yourself. Me & my invention will walk. Thanks! Lol! #SharkTank
Do you think Montz made the right choice? Let us know. 'Shark Tank' Season 12 airs every Friday at 8/7c only 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.