Maniac Pumpkin Carvers, a company that has made a name for itself through stunningly artistic pumpkins and educational workshops, took a dive into the “Shark Tank” but came out without a deal. Co-founders Chris Soria and Marc Evan showcased their unique business model that included virtual carving lessons, personalized carving kits, and one-of-a-kind pumpkins shipped across the country. Last year, the duo generated $150,000 from their virtual classes and another $90,000 from personalized kits. Not too shabby, right?
But the business’s seasonal nature raised several red flags for the Sharks. The co-founders were seeking $150,000 for an 8% stake in the company. However, their lack of direct-to-consumer services made Barbara Corcoran hesitate. Kevin O’Leary, fondly known as “Mr. Wonderful,” was quick to point out the pitfalls of seasonal businesses. He later elaborated on his X account, stating that he prefers to invest in businesses that have the potential for year-round profitability. Mark Cuban and Lori Greiner echoed similar sentiments, indicating that the business “didn’t make sense” and was “too difficult” for investment, respectively.
Shark Tank: Are Seasonal Businesses Uninvestable?
Interestingly, it wasn’t just the Sharks who were skeptical. Viewers at home seemed to share the same sentiment. Reddit was buzzing with criticisms and jokes aimed at Maniac Pumpkin Carvers. One Redditor pointed out, “Their competition is free YouTube videos,” while another lamented the absence of custom-carved fake pumpkins that could last beyond a single season. The Reddit thread was filled with viewers questioning the business’s viability and scalability.
Jason Blum was the last Shark in the tank willing to consider an investment, but ultimately he backed out. The episode left fans and casual viewers alike pondering the value of seasonal businesses, with many taking to social media platforms like X to express their skepticism. Here, fans were in disbelief over the price tags attached to these custom pumpkins, which ranged from $150 to over $800. Some even wondered what Chris and Marc did for their regular jobs, given the seasonal nature of their current venture.
Shark Tank: Kevin O’Leary’s Crypto Misadventure
While Kevin O’Leary’s advice for seasonal businesses could be considered sound, it’s worth noting that “Mr. Wonderful” himself has had his share of investment blunders. Most notably, O’Leary lost a significant amount in the FTX crypto scam. Initially skeptical about cryptocurrencies, he later converted and became an FTX spokesperson, stating that FTX adhered to “rigorous standards of compliance.” However, after the fall of FTX, Kevin admitted that he had most likely lost all of his $15 million investment. This serves as a potent reminder that all investments carry risk, whether they’re in seasonal businesses or volatile crypto markets.
For more on the latest episodes of ‘Shark Tank,’ tune in to ABC on Fridays at 8 pm ET.