Three thoughts and we catch-up on some personal finance links from the previous month (delayed due to the my DDoS attack).
- Favorite New Show: Shark Tank – It’s easy to miss a prime time show on Friday nights, but set your DVRs if necessary. I thought this show was related to actual sharks as in Shark Week, but it’s really about entrepreneurs trying to get funding from famous, and semi-famous investors (sharks). A typical entrepreneur will show up with a gadget and explain to the sharks of why they should invest in their money.
Last Friday’s episode has four entrepreneurs.
The best invention in my view was the lip balm from Kisstixx. The product consists of a paired flavors such as peaches and cream. You can put on the peaches and she can wear the cream and when you kiss you get a unique flavor. Mark Cuban ended buying 40% of this company. With a big deal with Walgreens on the table, I think he made a good choice. I would get in that.
The worst deal of the night was from a company called TEC (Technology Enabled Clothing). The owner was selling rights to the patents, but not the most lucrative clothing company itself, which he projected will make tens of millions within two years (and had already made a couple million). He wouldn’t give any details about the value of the patents or the income stream that they represent. They wasted everyone’s time and I was left thinking that he was just there to promote the business – he didn’t need the money for the patents and wasn’t attempting to sell a growing business.
Mixed in between was a very small line of cookware that would have ideally gone to shark Lori Greiner, a QVC selling queen, but she wasn’t a part of this week’s episode. Barbara Corcoran ended up investing in that. One of the smarter ideas was a system that takes dryer heat and recycles it into the house for heating. Unfortunately, the inventor wasn’t committed to the invention and it had almost sales in the last two years while he pursued other products. All the sharks passed. Lesson: If you don’t believe in your idea 100% no one else will.
Ask the Reader: What do you think of this kind of review of Shark Tank? Would it be a weekly feature that you’d like to read? It will be difficult to commit to something so time-sensitive, but I feel an entrepreneur could learn a lot and I figure that is a good portion of my audience.
- New Orleans Saints Putting a Bounty on Injuring Specific Players on the other Team – I’m heading to New Orleans soon and I plan to ask a few locals about how they feel about this Saints’ scandal. Early media reports show that the league will punish them a lot worse that they did the Patriots for taping other teams’ signals. I’m a Patriots’ fan, so maybe my vote doesn’t count, but influencing your team to hurt other players is a lot worse than pointing a camera that any fan could do from the stands quite legally. The Patriots were punished with the loss of a first round draft pick. If the Saints get away with anything less than two firsts it will make a mockery of the NFL’s discipline system.
- Larry Flynt’s Hustler Club’s Stripper Mobile Puts the Class in San Francisco – I usually stay a few miles south of San Francisco, but on Friday I had the need to head into the city with the wife. While there, we ran into Larry Flynt’s Hustler Club’s Stripper Mobile. The Baltimore Sun describes it as “a converted U-Haul truck advertising Flynt’s Hustler Club is outfitted with a Plexiglas box, sort of like the Popemobile. But this vehicle is outfitted with a stripper’s pole and a bunch of itsy-bitsy-bikini-clad dancers doing – what else? – pole dancing.” I think I’m beyond liberal, but I can’t see how it is appropriate. I’ve heard that billboards are taken down for their potential to cause accidents and I’m not sure how this is any different. I thought about not mentioning it in this space, because it’s not related to personal finance, but it was interesting enough that I figured it warranted the space.