Alongside magnificent inventions of the past centuries we all use (or used) on a daily basis, these shark unusual pitches have turned out to be surprise hits. Have a look at human imagination and modern technology at its best.
GrooveBook - $14.5 million
What happened to photo albums? These days all of our precious moments are on social media. But Groove Book is here to shake things up. The company helps its users print pictures from their social media as photo books.
Mark and Kevin helped the husband-and-wife co-founders Julie and Brian Whiteman to turn their product into a multi-million dollar company. The business was so successful that Shutterfly ended up buying them for $14.5 million.
Drop Stop - $24 million
Creators Marc Newburger and Jeffery Simon had a bright idea called the Drop Stop. Essentially just a foam tube, this thing fits right in between those little cracks between your car seat and keeps items from getting lost in the abyss.
This simple yet genius little invention caught the attention of the Shark Tark investors in a 2012 episode. Sales skyrocketed and the duo earned 24 big ones after the show aired.
Cousins Maine Lobster - $20 million
Cousins Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselikis had a successful run with their lobster roll food truck but decided to take it to a new level and face the sharks. The company, aptly named Cousins Maine Lobster makes delicious shrimp sandwiches. Barabara simply fell in love.
Though the others were a little less impressed, her investment helped owners, cousins Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselikis make $20 million since the year 2012.
Bubba's Q Boneless Ribs - $16 million
The former NFL defensive lineman Al "Bubba" Baker successfully transitioned from football into the food industry. That was evidenced by Daymond famously falling in love with his scrumptious ribs and sauce, prompting him to immediately place them in Costco and on QVC.
The ribs "racked" up around $16 million in the year 2017 alone. Its appearance on the shopping network as well as its availability in Costco make it only continue to grow in popularity.
Bottle Breacher - $15 million
Reappropriating goods is always a great foundation for a business. When Eli and Jane Crane figured out that they could use discarded .50 caliber bullets and make bottle openers out of them, the sharks were needless to say rather enthusiastic to get in on the money.
The couple did need to do some convincing, however. In the end, Mark and Kevin decided to invest in 2014. Since then, they've netted more than $15 million.
Kodiak Cakes $54 million
These Kodiak Cakes are in just about every major store. Just pop down to your local Target or Walmart and you'll find them there. The original product, as pitched by Joel Clark on Shark Tank in 2013 started out as just a simple flour-based pancake mix.
The pitch flopped, but luckily Joel received enough exposure from the show to turn his simple product into a multi-million dollar business, as well as expand his range to include various other breakfast and cake products. They've made $54 million in 2017 alone.
NeatCheeks - $500,000
This sounds a little gross at first, but these flavored baby wipes actually got the attention of the Shark Tank investors. Created by these two power moms Danielle Stangler and Julia Rossi, the idea is currently worth $150k for a 25-percent stake.
According to the creators, the idea came to Danielle after she wiped her 2-year-old daughter's face with a napkin that had been dipped in lemonade. The result: a toddler that was happy to get her face cleaned! That's when Danielle knew she had a worthwhile idea.
Chef Big Shake -$5 million
Shawn Davis AKA Chef Big Shake made his appearance in a 2012 episode of Shark Tank to pitch his homemade shrimp burgers. They didn't look terribly appetizing, but the sharks were intrigued nonetheless.
Unfortunately not enough to invest. But who needs 'em? After the show, Shawn's business exploded and shrimp lovers across America stocked up on this unique seafood delicacy. Davis expanded the menu and ended up making $5 million from his products.
BedJet - $3 million
When former NASA employee Mark Aramli took the stage on Shark Tank in the year 2015 to promote his prized invention "BedJet," a mattress pad for both hot and cold sleepers, the panel of judges weren't too thrilled about the idea, feeling that it would never really sell. They were wrong, viewers were into it.
The bed allows users to adjust the pad according to their preferences, so couples with opposing body temperatures can peacefully sleep side by side. While Mark's idea tanked on the show, it did earn him $3 million from outside parties after the appearance.
Tipsy Elves- $10 million
Nick Morton and Evan Mendelsohn had a love for ugly Christmas sweaters, so they decided to turn their passion for kitschy designs into something pretty profitable. Thanks to Robert's investment, their company "Tipsy Elves" was born.
The fun apparel company sells clothes with crazy designs, and of course many signature "ugly sweaters." In 2015 they made $10 million from their tacky yet charming clothes.
Grace and Lace - $20 million
Couple Rick and Melissa Hinnant got on the show to pitch their women's accessory business "Grace and Lace" in 2013. Barbara was attracted to the idea the most, which definitely help boost their popularity. In fact, when it aired, the company exploded with orders.
The owners, initially unprepared for the overwhelming success struggled to keep up with shipping out orders. The day their episode aired their revenue jumped $1 million. In total, they have made $20 million since their pitch aired.
Copa Di Vino - $25 million
James Martin, considered by the investors as the most disliked contestant, came on the show twice with the same pitch. Needless to say, he was let down both times. But his nifty idea got the attention of viewers around the country. The idea? Single-serving glasses of wine.
Though he rejected the sharks' offers twice, he got the recognition he needed to get that sales boom and save his family's winery from going bust. Since 2017 Martin has sold 38 million glasses of his signature Copa Di Vino wine.
Simply Fit Board - $9 million
Working out can be a drag, but in 2015, creators Gloria Hoffman and Linda Clark introduced the world (and the sharks) to their funky "Simply Fit Board" which gets you to twist your way to a rock-hard core.
Lori invested a pretty sum in the device and the trio ended raking in $9 million within a few months thanks to huge stores like Home Depot and Walmart that kept stock of the product.
InstaFire - $5 million
Barbecuing is great, but getting that fire sure is a process, and fanning a grill filled feels almost pre-historic. Not with InstaFire. The fire-starter kit comes with wood pellets, wax paraffin, and wait for it...volcanic rocks, so you know flames will fly. Up to 16 inches high in fact.
The pitch went well and Mark and Lori in particular were impressed and decided to go in on it together. InstaFire made $5 million in the year 2019 alone.
Safe Grabs - $5 million
You're heating something in the microwave, you take it out and your fingers practically burn off. Enter microwave aficionado Cyndi Lee and the problem is no longer. Lee created silicone mats that go under the dish and fold over once you take it out, thus preventing your fingers from touching the hot plate.
QVC queen Lori Greiner partnered up with Lee and together the pair made a whopping $5 million since the product's debut. The infomercial network certainly is behind a lot of that success.
Scrub Daddy - $50 million
These mega-popular smiley sponges have definitely caught your eye at the check-out counter. There's a reason why they're so damn successful. These unique sponges change texture according to the temperature of the water. And they smile at you!
When creator Aaron Krause pitched the idea, Lori loved it and decided to team up with Krause. These nifty cleaning companions have earned them $50 million since 2017.
ReadeREST $27 million
It's often the small and simple inventions that end up being worth millions. When inventor Rick Hopper kept getting frustrated with misplacing his reading glasses, he came up with this magnetic eyewear holder. Lori fell in love with the magnetic pocket attachment and teamed up with Rick.
Her input yielded results and together, they made $27 million since launching the product on the QVC network. Lori certainly knows her audience.
The Squatty Potty - $1 million
When this idea was first presented, most of the sharks in the room laughed it off. But Lori knew better and invested a lump sum. Thanks to her, people around the world got the chance to go to the bathroom in the way the body intended.
The unique yet very necessary product correctly positions the body for it to easily do its thing. The day after it received its investment, the company did about a million dollars in sales. This gives doing "your business" a whole new meaning.
FiberFix - $50 million
Leaks or tears too that are too serious for mere duct tape? You may need to invest in some more heavy-duty materials, like FiberFix. Thanks to Eric Child and Spencer Quinn, this impressive adhesive hardens into a seal that is virtually impenetrable.
Lori, who clearly loves products that can be best showcased on the famous infomercial network jumped at the chance to invest. FiberFix raked in $50 million since the Shark Tank partnership.
Mission Belt - $25 million
Forget the old traditional belt that simply fastens with a buckle and holes, the Mission Belt is revolutionizing getting dressed. This belt has a special clasp instead. The company's name comes from its mission of helping communities with microloans for small business ventures.
It was Daymond who saw the potential in this company and helped these founders Zac Holzapfel and Jeff Jensen reach it. With a helpful investment and hard work, Mission Belt has made more $25 million since they aired on the show.
Ring (aka DoorBot) - $1.1 billion
In 2013 CEO of Ring James Siminoff got on the show to talk about his bright idea, the doorbell camera called DoorBot. Ring was already one of the most popular home security systems in the U.S. when he got on the show, which is why the sharks never actually wound up investing.
Looks like he didn't need them in the end as James recently sold Ring to Amazon for $1.1 billion dollars! Mark Cuban said even after the sale went through that he would not invest in it. According to him, it's overvalued.
During the prohibition era, American businesses had to find alternative ways to make products without any alcohol, and naturally, people were seeking another kind of thrill.
When an Atlanta-based pharmacist named John S. Pemberton invented his famous "Wine Cocoa," which served as a cure for headaches, people fell for the new drink. The real kick came from certain ingredients. He replaced alcohol with sugars, carbonated water, and extracts from the coca leaf and kola nut.
Every billion-dollar idea has an origin story. But when Spencer Silver, an inventor for the manufacture 3M came up with the idea of his sticky square papers, initially nobody really knew what to do with these things.
For several years, post-its were unknown to the rest of the world. But things soon changed.
From Heaven Above
In 1974, a colleague of Spencer, named Art Fry who had attended one of his seminars, came up with the bright idea of placing the adhesive paper in his hymn book, thus using it as a bookmark! The papers easily marked the pages and quickly his book became filled with post-its that marked various pages.
Thankfully the use was discovered and ever since people have been sticking them on walls, inside books, leaving notes on desks, you name it. It's now worth 5 billion dollars.
We have been graced with countless fantastic products that have come into this world completely by accident. Take the 11-year-old Frank Epperson for example, who left his mixed soda pop with water and promptly forgot all about it.
The next day his cup of sweet drink was frozen over, and, voila, the first frozen "popsicle" came to life. Years later, as an adult, he marketed his little invention.
Harry Coover was a chemist responsible for the creation of Super Glue - accidentally. Rather than marketing it right away and making a ton of money, Hoover set it aside, not even wanting to deal with the super sticky substance.
Years later, he found himself revisiting his little creation while assembling plane parts and discovered just how powerful the glue actually was. It was only then that he realized he may have something quite unique.
The Ultimate Glue
Fusing plane parts together was the beginning for Coover. While it was originally dubbed "airplane glue" it soon went mainstream when folks realized that it could be used for just about anything.
Soon everybody had their hands on a tube of Superglue. Unfortunately, some people noticed that the glue's potent chemicals resulted in certain regulations being introduced, but it's still popular as ever.
A favorite among kids, this gooey delight came out in a rather unexpected way. Originally a special kind of soap dough that was used for cleaning soot from fireplaces, the product became redundant when then homes switched over to electric heating.
With all that dough on his hands, creator Joseph McVicker took a hard hit financially. But his sister ended up saving the day.
One day McVicker's sister, who happened to be a teacher, brought the sough to school for students to use as modeling clay. The stuff was a real hit, and the kids just loved to play with it.
McVicker caught onto the buzz and decided to take the bold move and re-market it as a toy for kids instead of a fireplace cleaner. With a little bit of dye, the product got a second life.
Genius physicist Percy Spencer was the man behind the microwave oven. This genius little appliance is simply a must for anyone who would prefer heating up a bowl of leftovers in one minute rather than achingly stirring it around in a pan over a hot stove.
This great creation came about while Spencer was actually attempting to create a new vacuum tube.
Spencer was tinkering on his new device when he noticed that the chocolate bar in his pocket oddly began to melt. He assumed it was the heatwaves emanating from his vacuum's radar.
In order to test his theory, he grabbed some popcorn kernels to check the reaction. It didn't take long until there was a loud pop. It was clear that Spencer had inadvertently created the microwave. Movie lovers around the world rejoiced.
The Ice Cream Cone
Ice cream was overflowing at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair. Folks gathered in droves at the ice cream stands and vendors found themselves running out of bowls and spoons and needed to come up with a different way to serve the goodies.
Faced with high demands, these ice cream businesses need to think of something fast. If not, they stood to lose all those customers and all that sweet ice cream would have gone to waste!
Help From Next Door
At the fair, just one booth over, there happened to be a zalabia booth, which is a crispy pasty-like dessert that originates from Syria. It was Ernest A. Hamwi that thought of something. The move would change the ice cream game forever.
The vendor decided to roll his pastry into a cone-like cup in order to serve the tasty treat. This ingenious idea of course resulted in the ice cream cone, which, if you ask anyone is the ultimate way of chowing down on ice cream.
The Hybrid Car
It may surprise you but in 1902, Ferdinand Porsche won his class at the annual Exelberg Hill-Climb in Austria in a front-wheel-drive hybrid-electric car. While that made waves, what came nearly a century later, truly changed the course of automobile technology.
In 1997 Toyota surprises its competitors by releasing hybrid Prius to Japanese consumers. It took almost three years for the Prius to reach North America. These days, the greener, the better.
The man behind the Teflon pan is Ray J Plunkett. He was actually working on a method to improve the refrigerator cooling system, but during the process, made a mistake with the chemicals.
When he realized what he had done, it dawned on him to then coat a pan with synthetic chemicals. The result was the non-stick Teflon pan.
The Personal Computer
This brilliant invention burst into our lives in the 1970s. The earliest PC was first introduced in 1974 by Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (MITS) via a mail-order computer kit called the Altair.
It was the invention that laid the foundation for all the software giants like Microsoft, Apple, IBM, and countless other ones, that are now a part of our smartphones.
One day Swiss scientist, George de Mestral was taking his dog for a walk outside in the woods. As dogs like to do outside, he went about his business and frolicked around the outdoors, inadvertently picking up burrs. These are nasty spiky little plants that stick to fur.
On his return, George noticed how his dog's fur was filled with these little things that caused horrible skin irritation and were generally unpleasant to have in the home.
Naturally, the inquisitive scientist decided to take a look at his dog's fur under a microscope. What he noticed was a rather interesting discovery. On further inspection, he saw that his four-legged pal had fur had hook-like follicles that were responsible for its sticky quality.
He took inspiration from the dog fur and spent the next few years developing the material we know today as velcro. This magic substance is super useful and is used in countless items such as goes, bags, and ties.
George Crum was a chef at an eatery in the Adirondack Mountains, when one day, in the year 1853, a difficult customer kept sending his plate of chips back, complaining that they were too soggy.
In a burst of anger, George cut the potatoes into wafer-thin slices, deep-fried them with salt, and sent them back to the customer. The result was actually a deliciously crispy delight now known as potato chips!
The Printing Press
In 1439 German inventor Johannes Gutenberg created this revolutionary device that brought us into the modern era. The machine allowed ink to be transferred to paper in mechanized form, and on a mass scale. This resulted in the spread of information, making things far more accessible.
It truly was the turning point of our world. Content was printed and shared and the spread of knowledge took a life of its own.
Back in the day, Yale college students used empty tins from the Frisbie pie company to toss around the field for amusement. A metal disk flying around the air could do some pretty bad damage if it landed badly. Imagine that hitting your nose! That's why things had to change.
That's why on January 23, 1957, the Wham-O toy company decided to roll out out the first batch of their aerodynamic plastic discs—what we now know as the Frisbee.
Engineers Alfred Fielding and Marc Chavannes were two engineers who attempted to reinvent wallpaper by designing 3D-textured variety from shower curtains. Instead, they reinvented the packaging industry.
When they noticed the protective properties, they realized that the material was perfect for packaging electronics and thus bubble wrap entered the market. Aside from that, kids around the world discovered how fun it was!
Photography and Cameras
1840 was the year people stopped relying on portraits for freezing a moment and creating memorable snapshots. The invention of the camera turned self interpretations of painters, into real-life images of what people really looked like.
The 20th and 21st centuries would not look the same if not for one of the most important inventions of all time. Today the cameras have become a tool for artists, a communication and working device and how not, part of our cellphones which we can't live without.
Old-timey products were kind of strange and somehow multi-purpose too. The hygiene product Lysol which is today known as a home disinfectant and anti-bacterial substance had a slightly unusual origin story.
When first available to the American public, the product was subtly marketed as a form of birth control and health treatment for women. Thankfully times have changed and now the range of products under the Lysol name strictly deal with cleaning wounds or unclean surfaces.
While this was less a revolutionary invention, and more of a groundbreaking rediscovery, it still did transform dental hygiene for good. Initially, Listerine was used as a floor cleaner until someone had the bright idea of swallowing it.
What resulted was thankfully not a trip to the hospital, but rather minty fresh breath. Fast forward many years later and now Listerine is the number one selling mouth wash on the market.
Discovered by the Scottish scientist Alexander Fleming in 1928, this miracle chemical concoction was an accidental discovery. The emergence of this drug completely transformed modern medicine with its anti-bacterial qualities.
If it wasn't for penicillin we would not have antibiotics.
Try getting around today without WAZE or Google Maps. The GPS (Global Positioning System) was the first electronic navigation system that used satellite technology, and it was, needless to revolutionary. It was created in the early 60s and was used for the guiding of nuclear subs.
It was however only in the year 2000 that President Clinton granted nonmilitary organizations access to unscrambled GPS signals. Within a short amount of time, private companies were churning out little car-friendly devices that helped you get from A to B.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ruth Wakefield was an American chef who became best known for inventing the first chocolate chip cookie. One day she was baking her famous chocolate cookie when she ran out of cocoa powder. As a substitute, she broke up some baker's chocolate into chunks and prayed that they'd simply melt and become chocolate cookies.
They didn't. Instead, a new kind of cookie freshly emerged from the oven. Ones with delicious little chocolate chips that solidified in place. Wakefield then started a little company and called it Toll House.
Although the worldwide network of computers had been a thing since as far back as the 60s, it took shape as the Internet as we know it today during the 1990s.
The creation of the World Wide Web by British computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee is behind modern-day communication, research, entertainment, and politics.