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"Shark Tank" is a fun reality series that may hold some very valuable lessons for the first time inventor / entrepreneur looking to raise investment.

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Watch a few episodes and you will undoubtedly find some commonalities between successful fund seeking hopefuls and total fails.

Here's what we have noticed:

Passion - Entrepreneurs / Inventors that enter the Shark Tank with a compelling story that demonstrates their passion for the product that they have developed goes a long way with the Sharks (investors). Often, you'll notice the Sharks light up with a smile when they hear a good story and see passion. This can sometimes help overshadow areas of weakness that would otherwise doom the entrepreneur from raising money.

Drive - Entrepreneurs / Inventors that produce results instead of excuses often end up with some type of deal negotiation on their hands. You'll see a lot of people on the show making compelling, well crafted pitches, but when the questions start coming from the Sharks, it often falls apart and the folks without the true drive make excuses for their short comings. This is the death spiral of fund raising, once an investor hears an excuse, he/she is likely to say "I'm out".

Sales - While it's not always a deal breaker, the Sharks almost always want to see some sort of sales with the product prior to making an investment. However, if the sales numbers are bad, this can hurt the entrepreneur more than it can help.

Patents - The Sharks do love patents and perhaps one of the most critical parts of the negotiation process is the inventor's ability to present a patent or patent pending status. One thing to note - when a patent is provided, licensing deals will sometimes come into the picture as part of the negotiation.

Numbers - Folks that walk away with a deal on hand often go into the negotiating process knowing exactly what they're willing to give up to get what they need. Great negotiators hold their cards close.

More than money - The Sharks bring decades of experience and often the entrepreneurs / inventors that build a successful relationship and go on to build a better business start by doing their research and knowing who they want to take money from even if the % negotiated isn't the best offer on the table. The Sharks have a value add far beyond additional investment, it the inventor's job to figure out what those values are and how they can be leveraged.

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Posted in Moving and Relocating Post Date 12/08/2018


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