PHOOZY, the Charlotte, N.C.-based maker of protective thermal cases for phones, tablets, and laptops, became the latest outdoor brand to score a sizable business investment on the hit ABC reality show “Shark Tank.”
Co-founders Kevin Conway and Josh Inglis pitched their product on the episode that aired April 2, landing interest from multiple investors and eventually securing a $500,000 infusion of cash from two sharks—Lori Greiner and Robert Herjavec.
“Going into the tank is every bit as intense as you can imagine,” Conway said. “While we were very prepared and confident in our product, you never know what can happen with the investors. It was very thrilling to have both Robert and Lori really understand our product, our mission, and our brand and want to invest in us.”
The so-called “tank”—a television set inside The Venetian Resort in Las Vegas—also became the scene of a bidding war for the privilege of partnering with PHOOZY.
Kevin O’Leary, known as “Mr. Wonderful,” made an offer, but Conway and Inglis instead chose to work with Greiner and Herjavec—the “perfect sharks,” Conway said—who will invest $500,000 for 8 percent equity in the brand. The two sharks will also receive $1.50 per unit sold until the $500,000 is paid back.
“What a surreal experience,” Inglis said. “We knew our numbers going into the tank and felt prepared, but you never know what the sharks will throw at you. Receiving multiple offers from the sharks and landing a deal with Lori and Robert is an entrepreneur’s dream come true. Now the real work begins.”
More accolades for PHOOZY
PHOOZY is yet another outdoor brand to catch the eye of the sharks. In the history of the show, numerous outdoor brands have stepped up to make their play for investments. Sometimes entrepreneurs leave empty-handed. Sometimes they get less than they wanted. And sometimes—as was also the case with eco-friendly ski wax brand mountainFLOW eco-wax, which presented on the show in February—they have to field offers from two or more sharks.
The validation that PHOOZY’s founders received on “Shark Tank” follows another honor they received last August. In the latest summer issue of our print magazine, PHOOZY’s Apollo II case was voted as the twelfth hottest outdoor product of the season.
The product’s description: “If anything can protect your phone from the elements, it’s NASA space suit technology. The PHOOZY combines a thick EVA foam with a patent-pending chromium thermal layer and UV coating that protects the battery from dying in the cold and overheating in the sun. The case is water-resistant and protects against drops up to eight feet.”