During season 6 episode 14, Michael Woolley attempts to raise money for his Vestpakz vest-backpack hybrid. When Christen Woolley was in sixth grade, she came up with the idea for the product.
When Christen was 11 years old, she was already a star, having been on Oprah and receiving a Disney Dreamers and Doers Award.
As a teacher, babysitter, and grad student in Wake Forest, Christen was unable to accompany her father on Shark Tank because of her busy schedule.
Michael will appear on Shark Tank with officials from Eastport in November. Following a license arrangement with Eastport, Walmart now offers Vestpakz items.
Michael appears to be looking for brand publicity and potentially financing to help his firm develop.
Company Overview in Shark Tank
|Episode||Season 6 Episode 14|
|Product Offering||Sell backpack and vest products for even weight distribution|
|Founder||Michael Woolley and Arthur Grayer|
|Required Investment||$50,000 for 10% share in the business|
|Closing Deal||No Deals|
|Offered Sharks||No Sharks Offered|
|Current Business Status||Out of Business|
What is VestPakz?
Christen Bell, a sixth-grader looking for a more practical solution to carry her school materials, designed Vestpakz.
Vestpakz is a backpack vest with both front and rear pockets. Moreover, compared to traditional backpacks, the products are more innovative with the design as it distributes a more even weight and is more comfortable.
In 2002, Vestpakz was granted a utility patent; however, the firm located in Florida only joined with Eastsport, which is the largest backpack supplier of Walmart, in 2013. With that collaboration came an agreement with Walmart.
Despite the magnitude of the situation, the Woolley family, including herself, her parents, and her brother, still manages Vestpakz.
Vestpakz is a brilliant concept. They are a vest that doubles as a backpack for school-age kids who need it. Vestpakz has a partnership with Eastsport. Thus you can get the vests from them for $19.99 each.
On Eastsport’s website, the vests are available in pink, black, and camouflage; however, more colors are available.
Christen Bell made a vest with pockets on the front and back so she could hold her school books.
There are a lot of good things about the Vestpakz Vest, and it is among the most interesting things that Shark Tank has ever shown us!
Christen Bell, an 11-year-old science student in 1998, came up with the idea for the Vest Pack/Backpack as part of a school project.
One of the highlighted innovations was Vestpakz. Christen’s mother, Cheryl, visited the National Air and Space Museum, Washington, D.C., to talk about her daughter’s creation. “It’s critical to foster creativity and a creative attitude in children,” Cheryl remarked.
Even if the Vestpakz cannot hold a variety of materials, it is still incredible how an 11-year-old girl’s invention has progressed thus far.
Arthur Grayer and Michael Wooley, both VestPAKz board members, were recently approved to join the Shark Tank. Arthur is the biggest licensee, while Michael is the main financial officer.
The company contacted Shark Tank to seek for investment, which the $50,000 investment in return for a 10% ownership in the firm. Importantly, Arthur’s daughter designed VestPakz only in sixth grade.
Her instructor proposed a simple scientific assignment to his daughter, which involved identifying a problem and creating a solution.
After his daughter learned that backpacks were burdensome, he devised a new one. If you’re looking for a practical and fashionable bag, this one is the best option for you.
VestPakz is a hybrid vest-backpack with a feasible design that equally distributes the weights in the bag.
Michael has worked in the backpack industry for over three decades and it is his first time seeing anything quite like the VestPak.
Michael says that the Sharks’ involvement in the VestPak will allow them to put a ton of money in the vest’s front pocket at the end of the day.
Kevin, who has maintained a disgruntled countenance throughout the episode, suddenly shifts his emphasis to sales.
The Sharks point out that $10,000 worth of items were sold in the months of January and February.
When Robert asks about their friendship, Michael explains that he controls the product’s rights, which he eventually licenses to his friend, Arthur, to sell it. Michael and Arthur have a long history together. In fact, Arthur is the one and only individual who is legally allowed to sell VestPAKz.
Each Shark received a sample and a lollipop from Arthur and the two youngsters who entered the tank.
Kevin, on the other hand, argues that it might be better to get rid of the children since Shark Tank is going to become nasty.
Robert then requests clarity; the arrangement is set up such that Arthur buys the goods and then pays Michael a fee.
Robert asks for payment, which Michael reveals will be in the amount of six and a half royalty payments. This particular VestPakz, Arthur admits during Mark’s questioning, sells for 14.88 dollars which cost around 4.75 dollars in manufacturing, revealing a price range of $14 to $30 depending on the type.
Robert inquires about VestPakz’s overall sales, but Arthur starts with a narrative.
For the months of January and February, the product was available at Wal-Mart thanks to a license arrangement reached in November, according to Arthur.
VestPakz sales were modest, despite the fact that the items would be sold in 75 locations.
Arthur wished to get the product accessible prior to the holidays, however, manufacturing would not be ready until December.
Robert wishes Arthur to think in Robert’s shoes as he is a firstly an investor, and a firm contacts him, claiming to have gotten into Walmart but only selling 10,000 dollars in two months.
In November, Barbara and Mark ask the two for further information on what looks to be a dire scenario for Robert.
In light of Wal-strong Mart’s interest, Arthur reveals it to Michael, but Michael asks for a short wait so that he may provide some context on VestPAKz.
Because of the great level of interest, Arthur indicates that Wal-Mart may restock, but Michael asks for a little wait while he delivers additional background information about VestPAKz, which Arthur agrees to.
Mark loves the product; however, the purpose is investing in businesses and entrepreneurs, and since VestPakz has been licensed to Arthur, there are plenty of dark areas and unsolved concerns, in Mark’s opinion. Thus, Mark also leaves the transaction immediately.
Lori and Barbara are the two remaining Sharks, and Barbara shares her excitement for the item, which is a reinvention of most bought items for children.
She then explains to Arthur that the product is correct; however, the entrepreneurs are incompetent, and she ends the contract.
Lori understands that the grind might be difficult, but she feels that Michael and Arthur have done well thus far.
The problem, in her perspective, is that if a product is given to so many outlets and able to sell 10,000 dollars in two months, the customers speak, regardless of the perceptions of the Shark toward the concept of the product.
There have been a lot of bad sales at Walmart for two months, which means Lori is going to be the last Shark.
Arthur Grayer and Michael Woolley left Shark Tank disappointed after failing to acquire funding for their firm Vestpakz.
While the premise is intriguing, I had hoped that Arthur and Michael would go further with it after their Shark Tank appearance. Kevin said it well: Fantastic product, terrible businesspeople.
When you visit the VestPakz website now, you will be sent to a Google Forms page where you will be asked for personal information from your name, email address, topic, and message.
This whole venture seems to be fueled by “Andross Computers,” which looks like a computer repair company.
While I was a fan of the concept and interested in how children might go to and from school in the future, VestPakz is a complete and utter disaster.
As a result of the lack of knowledge, I could identify a large number of others who share my desire for a product that has now been shattered.
Vestpakz website domain has a redirect link to Eastport.com, which sells Vest Packs.
Perhaps an exclusive licensing arrangement existed prior to this Shark Tank episode? It was known that they had a relationship with Eastport; however, it now looks to be an exclusive agreement.
Unfortunately, all of the Vestpakz products on Eastport are present “out of stock,” only a day before they were scheduled to be featured on January 13, 2015, on the Show.
Eventually, the business is not currently operating as of now.