Start-ups

'Shark Tank' reject returned after being told he had the 'worst pitch' ever—and got a $500,000 deal

Source: ABC

The judges on ABC's "Shark Tank" are known for their sharp bite and brutal honesty, but one former Tank reject found redemption when he returned to re-pitch his company after leaving empty handed in 2013.

This time, he scored a half-a-million-dollar investment.

Jason Woods appeared on "Shark Tank" season 5 to pitch his battery-powered Kymera Body Board, which he said could go up to 20 miles per hour in the water. At the time though, Woods didn't have a product, just prototypes, and the Sharks ripped apart Woods' pitch.

Mark Cuban told Woods he wasn't an entrepreneur, just a "want-repreneur," and Daymond John said Woods had the "worst pitch" he'd ever seen.

Though the experience was brutal, according to Woods, after he walked out of the tank without a deal, he quit his job, changed his attitude and took the Sharks' advice to improve his business. Woods enlisted someone else — Adam Majewski — to run Kymera operations and they raised $625,000 in funding.

Kymera also turned the prototype into a product selling for $3,500. Majewski, who was also in the Tank on Sunday, said the company sells direct to consumer but had signed a deal with one of the largest luxury boat manufacturers in the world, by which Kymera would have access to all the manufacturer's dealers.

Woods and Majewski were seeking a $250,000 investment in exchange for a 5% stake in the company, money that they said they would use for inventory.

Kevin O'Leary, however, questioned the $5 million valuation of Kymera. Wood replied that the technology is scalable; while the body board took him 12 years to build, he created a number of other products — like a kayak and a surfboard — in only two weeks.

Convinced, O'Leary offered $250,000 in exchange for a 5% equity stake and a $500 royalty per unit until $750,000 is recouped.

John then jumped in, asking for a 10% stake in exchange for $250,000.

Meanwhile, Robert Herjavec said he loves the Kymera, but told Woods that he needs to stop with the other products because it's unfocused and burning cash.

With that, Herjavec gave an offer: $500,000 in exchange for a 10 percent stake in the company.

"Love it, love the second chances," Herjavec said. "That's one of the things that makes this country great. Everyone deserves a second chance."

Woods and Majewski accept. 

"Redemption is the only word you can use," Woods said. "If you're willing to give everything that you've got to what you believe in, you can make it happen. But it may take a long time and it may be harder than you think, but it's totally worth it in the end."

Don't miss: 'Shark Tank': Mark Cuban invested $100,000 in this invention that turns a pickup truck bed into a pool

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Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to ABC's "Shark Tank."

VIDEO1:1301:13
Shark Tank star Robert Herjavec's first big splurge cost about $6 million


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