Skiing is fun, but lugging a pair of skis across a snow-covered parking lot or up a mountain? Not so much. An invention featured on Sunday's episode of ABC's "Shark Tank" aims to tackle that annoyance, and it got a $50,000 investment from Barbara Corcoran.
Co-founders Nick Palermo and Kyle Allen invented Ski-Z — a ski caddy that consists of a single wheel, which attaches to the tips of your skis using a Velcro strap (which is currently selling for less than $19). Instead of carrying your skis over your shoulder, Ski-Z let's you roll your skis around (similar to a suitcase). Palermo and Allen told the Sharks they are projecting Ski-Z to do $575,000 in sales for 2018.
Ski-Z started out with a bang, the co-founders told the investors. In its first year of sales in 2013, Palermo and Allen sold $230,000 worth of the product in four months. But the success didn't stick.
The business had to take a backseat in the years that followed: Palermo was diagnosed with cancer and Allen was blindsided by a divorce. The bad luck just kept coming, and the duo failed to make any money with Ski-Z.
In addition to the years-long sales slump, the entrepreneurs also told the Sharks that five years ago, Allen had mortgaged his house to buy inventory (which horrified Mark Cuban) — and they still had $350,000 worth of product left.
Barbara Corcoran, who has tweeted about her own ski trips in the past, saw potential and offered exactly what they came into the tank asking for: $50,000 for a 15 percent stake in the company. But to the Sharks' surprise, the entrepreneurs didn't immediately accept. Cuban then said he'd help them out with their decision by declaring that he was out.
Corcoran said she would be insulted if they didn't take her offer. Then Daymond John jumped in, offering $50,000 for 20 percent. Allen, though, wanted to confirm with Corcoran that if they ended up needing a $50,000 line of credit, she'd be willing to help them with that too.
"Of course," Corcoran says. "But you should have made that part of your deal, because in essence, you're asking for 50 and another 50. And you're not a very good boy," she added, wagging her finger.
Ski-Z struck the deal with Corcoran.
"They will sell like hot cakes," Corcoran said of Ski-Z.
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Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to "Shark Tank."