Shark Tank, a popular television show, has provided a platform for aspiring entrepreneurs to pitch their business ideas to a panel of successful investors. Over the years, several black owned businesses have made their mark on the show, either securing investments or experiencing significant growth and success despite initial rejections. Let’s explore some of these success stories.
The Lip Bar: From Rejection to Success
The Lip Bar, a Black owned cosmetic company, faced rejection on Shark Tank. However, CEO Melissa Butler did not let that deter her. She started the business in her kitchen and went on to expand it, with products now being sold in over 750 Target and 500 Walmart stores. The Lip Bar’s journey showcases the power of determination and resilience in building a successful brand.
After the rejection on Shark Tank, Melissa Butler took the feedback she received and used it as motivation to improve and grow her business. She focused on expanding her product line, introducing new shades and formulas to cater to a wider range of customers. This strategy paid off, as The Lip Bar gained popularity and secured partnerships with major retailers, allowing the brand to reach a larger audience. Today, The Lip Bar is not only a successful cosmetics company, but also a symbol of empowerment and representation in the beauty industry.
Hammer and Nails: Attracting Investors Beyond Shark Tank
Hammer and Nails, a nail salon designed for men, also faced rejection on Shark Tank. However, the business attracted other investors outside of the show and is now valued at an impressive $100 million. This success story demonstrates that opportunities for growth and investment can arise even after a disappointing experience on the show.
After their appearance on Shark Tank, Michael Elliott, founder of Hammer and Nails received significant media attention, which helped them attract investors who saw the potential in their unique concept. The business expanded its operations and opened multiple locations across the United States, catering to a growing demand for male-focused grooming services. By capitalizing on their exposure from Shark Tank and leveraging the power of networking, Hammer and Nails were able to secure the funding they needed to scale their business and achieve remarkable success.
Big Shake’s Hot Chicken and Fish: Worth Millions Within a Year 
In 2011, Shawn “Chef Big Shake” Davis, founder of Big Shake’s Hot Chicken and Fish, introduced shrimp burger patties to the Shark Tank audience. Despite not securing a deal on Shark Tank, the company’s value reached $5 million within a year. This rapid growth highlights the market demand and potential success of black owned businesses, even without the support of the show’s investors.
Although CBS Foods did not receive an investment on Shark Tank, their appearance on the show garnered significant attention and interest from consumers. This exposure, combined with their innovative product offering, enabled the company to quickly gain traction in the market. Within a year, CBS Foods had established a strong customer base and achieved impressive sales figures, positioning themselves as a major player in the food industry. This success story serves as a reminder that determination, perseverance, and a high-quality product can lead to significant growth and success, regardless of the outcome on Shark Tank.
Other Successful Black-Owned Businesses on Shark Tank 
Several other black owned businesses have secured deals on Shark Tank in recent seasons. Some notable examples include:
- Sienna Sauce, offering a variety of flavors and winning a deal in season 12.
- Roq Innovation, providing innovative LED winter beanies and accessories and scoring a deal in season 13.
- Noel Durity’s Twist It Up, a portable and washable comb for afro-centric hair, securing a deal in season 10.
- Best Wardrobe Solutions, offering men’s premium accessories and striking a deal in season 10.
- Kreyòl Essence, providing natural hair and skin care products and scoring a deal in season 11.
- KIN Apparel, focusing on functional and inclusive clothing and accessories with an emphasis on haircare, securing a deal in season 13.
- Zach & Zoë, offering a variety of honey flavors and handmade candles, making a deal in season 13.
- Everything Legendary, providing plant-based meat alternatives and securing a deal in season 12.
- Black Sands Entertainment, creating comics and cartoons centered on Black heroes and African mythology, scoring a deal in season 13.
- Wondry Wine, offering cocktail wines infused with organic fruit extracts and making a deal in season 14.
The success stories of black owned businesses on Shark Tank exemplify their resilience, innovation, and ability to thrive despite initial rejections. These businesses have achieved significant growth, expanded their product lines, and attracted investments beyond the show. Supporting and celebrating these businesses not only showcases their individual achievements but also highlights the importance of diversity and representation in entrepreneurship. By recognizing and amplifying the success of black-owned businesses, we can foster an inclusive and supportive environment that empowers entrepreneurs from all backgrounds to pursue their dreams and make a lasting impact in the business world.