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SwiftPaws

swiftpawsMeghan Wolfgram hopes to catch a Shark for SwiftPaws, her lure chasing course for dogs, in Shark Tank episode 1321. SwiftPaws is a series of motorized pulleys that has a line running through it. Whan a flag is attached to the line and the motor is turned on, dogs go wild chasing the flag. It’s a great way for your dog to have some fun and get some exercise at the same time. Wolfgram says 50% of American dogs are overweight and her product is a great way to help solve that problem. She ultimately wants to be a “health and wellness lifestyle brand for pets.”

Meghan originally made SwiftPaws for commercial interests. She sold to law enforcement agencies, search and rescue teams and even zoos (to exercise the cheetahs). In 2018, she decided to make a home edition and she raised $73,608 in a successful Kickstarter campaign. The home version costs $500 and comes with the main unit, a remote, 3 pulleys, battery, charger, flags, line, line winder, stakes, tethers, and tote bag. Later the same year, she raised another $130,166 on IndieGoGo for the Home Plus version. That costs $700 and comes with everything in the Home version but has 750 feet of line, 5 pulleys and longer batterie life.

Wolfgram no longer makes the commercial grade lures. She likens her product to a sort of capture the flag for dogs. The product has attracted investors. In May, 2020, she raised $500,000 from “undisclosed investors.” Running this business is the only job she’s had since graduating from DePauw University in 2011 with an economics degree. She likely wants a Shark to help her scale quickly.

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Swift Paws – Doggie Capture the Flag

SwiftPaws Shark Tank Recap

Meghan enters the Shark Tank with her dog, Piper. She’s seeking $240,000 for  6% of her company. She says pet owners feel guilty when they can’t play with their pets. When Meghan turns on the machine, Piper goes chasing after the flag wildly as the Sharks laugh. Daymond takes the trigger and operates the machine, then Lori tries it. Meghan takes Piper offstage, when she comes back, she tells the Sharks the game is a competitive sport.

She explains the business started manufacturing professional grade “lure courses” in 2012. Meghan discusses how her dog, Pretzel, recently passed. Next she tells how people wanted a home version. She raised $670,000 in a seed round and she owns 63% of the business. Each unit sells for $449 and they cost $135 to make. Year to date (summer, 2021) she has $750,000 in sales. She’s on target to do $1.5 million for 2021 and has $1.5 million in lifetime sales. She expects to make $140,000 in net profit on the $1.5 million. In 2020, she did $425,000 in sales and lost $380,000. The reason for those numbers is she was out of stock until June, 2020. The reason she lost money is she kept everyone on payroll during the Covid-19 pandemic.

She wants to reduce manufacturing costs. Kevin says he needs to redesign the manufacturing process; he’s out. Daymond doesn’t like the price; he’s out. Robert thinks it should be $199, Meghan agrees. Mark says she’s doing things the right way; he’s not the right person to help; he’s out. Lori loves Meghan and the product. She offers her “golden ticket” and offers $240,000 for 6%. Meghan takes the deal.

SwiftPaws Shark Tank Update

The Shark Tank Blog constantly provides updates and follow-ups about entrepreneurs who have appeared on the Shark Tank TV show. The deal with Lori closed quickly. During Meghan’s “watch party” on the original air date, Lori joined the party virtually via a Zoom call. Apparently, Meghan was wearing Lori’s “golden ticket” on a necklace during the party. In the 24 hours following the initial air date, the company did $100,000 in sales and sold out of its inventory. The $100,000 is 7% of the ten year old company’s life time sales. The Shark Tank Blog will follow-up on SwiftPaws & Meghan Wolfgram as more details become available.

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