Wanna Date? is a company based in New York, NY, that wants to really get dates (the fruit) out there and into people's mouths.
The beginning of the pitch was a little awkward because the entrepreneur phrased it all as if she was talking about dating and not dates the things that come of trees. For instance, she said that she had her "first date, three years ago, in college" which seems kinda late to start dating but... to each their own, right?
Anyway... this entrepreneur has created a line of date-based spreads that are vegan, natural, and allergen free to satisfy her own cravings and power her through workours. She has created chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, and pumpkin spice flavors. Interestingly, not one of the products is a natural date flavor.
Kevin, font of obscure wisdom that he is, claims that a human could survive on dates "indefinitely" to which the entrepreneur responds that dates are a super food.
Wanna Date? is ten months old and has seen $31,000 in sales over that period. 10% of Wanna Date's sales have been direct to consumer through the company website, 35% have been through special events such as Christmas markets, and the rest have been wholesale. Currently, Wanna Date? products cost $2.40 per unit to manufacture though the entrepreneur believes that she can get it down to the $1.70-1.80 per unit range. Each product retails on the website for $12 and the entrepreneur says that "no one has ever complained about the price.
The entrepreneur is originally from Georgia and recently graduated from NYU. Her living expenses are still being supported by her father.
Making A Deal
Daymond says he sees Wanna Date? as having a hard time selling in stores because there's no one there to give the story that the entrepreneur gave to the sharks. He had that problem with Fubu and believes that Wanna Date? will be the same. He exits the deal.
Lori states that she thinks, despite the product being tasty, that it's still really early for her to get involved and drops out of the deal.
Mark asks why there was no plain date-flavored product. To this, the entrepreneur says that she wants to make dates mainstream and chose the flavors she did in order to help lower the barrier to entry. But Mark says he's disappointed that she didn't let dates themselves be the star. He then asks if she would abandon the other flavors and just do a plain version but, unfortunately, we never get an answer to this.
Barbara says that when she was starting out, if she didn't make a deal inside of two weeks, she'd starve. She sees the entrepreneur's ongoing support from her father as making success an "option" for her rather than a necessity and, for that reason, she's out. The entrepreneur tries to explain that she really does do everything, including building and running the company website, and that the support she receives from her father is just because he believes in her. But Barbara wants to know what would happen if she didn't have the "security blanket" and if she couldn't pay her rent.
Mark says that he sees value in having your back up against the wall but also doesn't think that not being in that position removes any chance of success.
Kevin drops out, stating that Wanna Date? is too early to be worth $500,000.
The entrepreneur says that the nearest competitor to Wanna Date? is filled with coconut butter and has "lots of calories." Mark says that he was initially very excited because he loves dates and, again, pushes for the entrepreneur to just go plain. She expresses an interesting in doing so and Mark then offers $100,000 in exchange for a 33% equity interest in the company.
Stating that it never hurts to ask if she can counter, the entrepreneur tries but is quickly cut off by Mark who just says "no." The other sharks try to encourage her to make a counter offer but she decides against and just accepts what Mark offered.
Mark's offer was 13% more equity than the entrepreneur originally wanted to make a deal for but, considering that the business was only valued at $500,000 to begin with, a bite of $196,970 this early on, while a lot in percentage terms, actually seems pretty reasonable.