Knife Aid has a simple mission to provide the most convenient, professional, and hassle-free knife sharpening service in the USA. They want their customers not to spend money on further consumption of knives but rather to maintain and restore the already available tools in their kitchen inventory so that they can enjoy preparing food with their friends and family.
What is Knife Aid?
Knife Aid uses traditional knife sharpening skills and advanced technology to use this ancient art and make it accessible for all of its customers. They provide online services and fast and easy mail services so that you can mail them and get even your most dull and broken knives sharpened in no time.
What Makes Them Unique?
Knife Aid provides an easy and safe mailing service for your dull knives, as you will receive the secure Knife Aid envelope, in which you can place your knives and then place them in the mailbox again. The postage is paid, and that is how your knives would be insured and traceable are they are sent back to the company.
The professional knife smiths at Knife Aid will ensure that your knives get their razor-sharp edges back, and then the knives are sent back to you so that you can enjoy their fresh and sharp edges and use them for hassle-free cooking and chopping.
Are They Still an Active Company?
The company is still very much active. They have a great and attractive website design and have received many positive reviews on Amazon.
How Did the Shark Tank Pitch Go?
Marc Lickfett and Mikael Soderlindh appeared on Shark Tank seeking $400,000 for 15% of their company, Knife Aid. The entrepreneurs gave a short and precise pitch, explaining their business model and the mailing service they use to receive and deliver the knives.
Kevin revealed that he was actually “chef wonderful” and had Japanese artists make blades for his kitchen, which he sharpens by using a stone with two different densities. Before he could go on further, Mark asked them to provide the knife samples. The duo helped Kevin and Rohan try out dull knives and knives sharpened by their knife smiths and see the difference for themselves.
Lori asked them to talk about their background, and Mikael explained that he and Marc had a past of building global brands and businesses. They were both from Sweden.
Lori asked him about the brands that he had launched in the past, and Mikael responded that he had founded Happy Socks. He was still on board and the brand owner but wasn’t operational anymore.
Barbara inquired how they came up with the knife sharpening business idea, and Mikael explained that they had a similar concept back in their country, where this knife-sharpening technology was only employed for commercial businesses. Mikael thought, why not bring the same concept to a simple consumer and make the process shorter and easier to follow?
The Sharks asked them to walk through their business model, and Marc explained that the price for sharpening every different knife depended on the blade design and size of the blade. They provided scissors sharpening services as well.
Rohan was still confused as to why Mikael wanted money from the Sharks when he already had made so many brands work successfully in the past. Mikael explained that he had previously failed in the USA market, not having American people involved in the business. He didn’t know the approach to fundraising and driving the growth of the business. He wasn’t going to make that mistake again.
Either he would get venture capital for the business or use the Shark Tank effect to boost its growth. Lori asked them what part of American businesses they needed help with. Marc replied that it was packaging and advertising the product and getting the message across to the target core audience.
They had made $120,000 so far that year, and they were mainly doing experimentation and were on the 4th iteration of their website. They were also using free Facebook and Instagram ads to advertise their service. They made $37,000 through sales last month.
Lori was interested in making an offer. She said that she had sold over a thousand products in 20 years and would make a risky offer to them. She was going to give them $200K in cash and $200K as a line of credit but wanted 20% equity. She would give her heart and mind to the business.
Mikael said they didn’t want more work in the marketing department, as they already had it sorted out. They needed brand building and placing their placards or advertisement boards up on retail locations.
Kevin said he would give them $400K for 20% equity because he was very much invested in the idea and wanted to get behind the company. Meanwhile, Rohan and Lori discussed among themselves.
Rohan told them that “two is always better than one” and that by partnering with Lori and himself, they would get the “queen of QVC” and the “king of branding on board” and offered them the same offer as Kevin.
Barbara started discussing something with Kevin and then announced that she and Kevin were willing to offer $500K for 20% equity.
As Lori and Kevin kept defending their offers, Mikael kept looking at Mark Cuban and waiting for him to make an offer.
Mark asked him about his perception of the accelerant he needed for his company, and they replied that they wanted to get the free traffic social PR for their brand. Mark said he would wait for them to decide which of the two offers from Lori and Kevin they would go with.
Mikael said he wanted a Shark on board that would invest more hours in their business than the other companies they have invested in. Barbara gave them 30 seconds to discuss among themselves, and when they took longer than that, Lori walked outside the hallway and told Mikael that she was passionate about the business and wanted to work with them.
Rohan, Kevin, and Barbara followed her, and the four Sharks battled to defend their offers. Mikael countered with $500K for 20% equity, and Rohan and Lori quickly snatched the offer, sealing the deal with Knife Aid.
Our Review of Knife Aid
Knife Aid provides an excellent and convenient knife sharpening service that you can avail of from the comfort of your house, as the knives are received and sent back by the company safely and in a short time.
Pros of Knife Aid
- Efficient and quick service.
Cons of Knife Aid
- The logistics service is more efficient than the knife sharpening service
- Some people left disappointing reviews on Amazon as they were not satisfied with the customer service
Who Is Knife Aid For?
Knife Aid is perfect for those who want to sharpen their knives but don’t know where they can get them done or how to do it by themselves. Knife Aid employs traditional knife sharpening crafts through digital and e-commerce routes so that anyone can access their service and get their dull knives sharpened easily and fast.
Are There Any Alternatives?
- Presto 08800 EverSharp Electric Knife Sharpener
- Work Sharp the knife sharpening company
Our Final Thoughts:
Mikael’s great background and the unique business model of Knife Aid were the big reason there were four Sharks desperately seeking to get a slice out of their business.