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Banana Loca

banana locaEntrepreneurial friends Renee Heath and Bechara Jaoudeh hope the Sharks like bananas when they pitch Banana Loca, their fun kitchen gadget that straightens and fills bananas with Nutella, peanut butter, yogurt, fluff and more, in Shark Tank episode 1311. Both of them have backgrounds in digital marketing and frequently saw each other at trade shows. They loved looking at the fun gadgets at the show.

One day, they were talking about eating peanut butter and Nutella with bananas, They thought it would be cool to create a gadget that let you stuff your bananas with a filling, so they did! You cut off the end then place the banana into Banana Loca. It gently straightens it, then you suck a core out of it using a special suction tool. After expelling the banana fruit from the tube, you fill it with the spread of your choice and inject it into the hollowed banana. The video below demonstrates the process.

They got things going with a successful Kickstarter campaign that raised $13,958 back in May, 2020. The product shipped in January, 2021. Now, they sell on their website and Amazon. It will set you back $28.99. Both Renee and Bechara still hold full time jobs. They likely want a Shark to help them hire someone to help run the business. Do Sharks like bananas?

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Posts about Banana Loca on Shark Tank Blog

Banana Loca – Banana Gadget

Banana Loca Shark Tank Recap

Renee and Bechara enter with a guy dressed as a banana. They are seeking $250,000 for 25% of their “a-peel-ing” business. Bechara tells about how he likes bananas and Nutella, but it’s a messy process. They demonstrate the product. The Sharks like it. Then they try filling bananas with their samples. Mark calls the process “oddly satisfying.” The Sharks like the taste and Robert calls it “genius.”

Renee goes on to say it can be used for other foods like cucumbers, zucchini and hot dogs. They did $134,000 in sales in 5 months with all organic marketing. Landed cost is $6 and they sell for $26.99. They invested $224,000 of their own money into the business. They want the $250,000 for inventory and paid marketing to supercharge sales. Mark thinks they don’t need to do paid marketing.

Kevin offers $250,000 for a $3 per unit royalty in perpetuity. Daymond thinks it will get used once or twice then get put on a shelf, he’s out. Lori thinks it’s too early, she’s out. Robert offers $250,000 plus a $3 royalty until he recoups $350,000 for 10%. Mark wants to know about their social media. Bechara says they need more followers and they’re hear for the “star power.” Kevin confers with Mark and they offer $250,000 for 25% plus a $3 royalty until they get the $250,000 back. Bechara counters with a $2 royalty. Mark says no and Renee and Bechara take the deal.

Banana Loca Shark Tank Update

The Shark Tank Blog constantly provides updates and follow-ups about entrepreneurs who have appeared on the Shark Tank TV show. While there’s no evidence the deal with Mark and Kevin closed as of early January, 2022, the company announced in a press release that they were “thrilled” with their new partners. They also said “keep your eyes ‘peeled’ for our big activation for National Banana Day on April 20th, 2022. Also, a TikTok video of someone demonstrating the product went viral, gathering over 7 million views and over 400,000 likes.

In May, 2022, the first re-run of this episode occurs about five months after the original air date. There is still no evidence the Shark deal has closed. The company, since airing, has received wholesale inquiries from all over the world. In April, 2023, the company revealed they’ve sold “tens of thousands” of units since appearing. Lifetime sales are approaching $10 million. As of November, 2023, the deal with Mark and Kevin did close.

The Shark Tank Blog will follow-up on Banana Loca & Renee Heath and Bechara Jaoudeh as more details become available.