Bernie Miller and Ruben Guymer introduced their venture, The Spooner, in 2006. This business produces skateboards without wheels. The aim was to let people use a skateboard using a stiff plastic board.
Randy wanted to get rid of a rusty old dog kennel as he cleared his surf shop. The skateboard prototype was accidentally formed as he chopped up the rigid plastic box. Immediately after Miller saw the shape and tried it out, he realized they were on to a winning formula. When they started constructing and selling boards in San Diego, they hired Guymer for marketing and promotional services.
They sold 1200 Spooner Boards in the beginning. As the company progressed, it decided to go after the PE market. They had delivered these boards to more than 5,000 schools by the end of the year. There met a teacher who was working there part-time. Actually, this teacher was a local store owner. She put the skateboards on her shelves. That’s when the real success started.
Fast forward to today, Learning Express has more than 100 locations distributing the product rapidly. Customers can purchase them on Amazon and in various toy shops. The company has sold more than half a million goods to this point.
There are three distinct designs to choose from. Children under the height of four feet can use the Freestyle. Another snowboard retails a bit higher amount and is best for taller kids. They also have a yard board. Unlike a snowboard, the yard board does not require snow to operate. All products are created in the United States and are virtually unbreakable.
Now that we have established what The Spooner is all about, let’s see whether or not they were successful in cracking a deal with the Shark Tank.
The owners of Spooner Boards, Bernie and Ruben hoped to get into big-box retailers with the help of the sharks. Randy Butler, a third partner, joins Bernie and Ruben as they approach the Sharks for a $400,000 investment in exchange for a 16.5% stake in their company. Before giving out samples to the Sharks, Ruben shows them how to use the Spooner and the yard board.
As a result of their initial interest, the sharks begin grilling them on revenue and profit margins. The owners were calm and reiterated that their business had potential. They have sold $50,000 worth of boards in six weeks during the Christmas season. The selling prices range of each snowboard is $45 to $55. However, they make the small and large boards for $12 and $12.50, respectively.
Shark Kevin O’Leary was impressed with the margins. The owners started stating more stats. According to them, there were $1.73 million in sales in the past year, with a forecast of $1.8 million. There are 1,200 retail outlets where they have been able to get their hands on the product. The three launched their marketing campaign by appearing in school plays and physical education programs. The boards have been utilized in more than 150,000 physical education (PE) activities.
The owners said that they want to broaden their horizons. Although they had the opportunity to visit Toys ‘r Us at the New York Toy Fair, they were apprehensive about overextending themselves. They think they will be able to get inside the big retailers’ stores with the help of a Shark.
According to Robert Herjavec, bringing in an investor changes the company’s dynamic because the investor has additional responsibilities.
Mark Cuban mentioned an investment in Surf Set Fitness as an example of a previous investment. When the proprietors realized how much their business had changed, they bought out their Shark partners to return to a more leisurely pace of operating. As far as Mark is concerned, he doesn’t think the Spooner Board members are ready to take that step.
Barbara took the opportunity to extend her offer. She wanted to offer $200,000 in exchange for an 8% stake. They’ll need to recruit a second Shark to put up the $200,000 to secure the other half of the deal. She put the onus on the rest of the Sharks.
Kevin O’Leary counters with an offer of his own. He offered to give them the $400,000 in $100,000 increments. He wanted a $2 per board sold until the loan gets repaid at a total of $800,000. A buyout would give him a 3% stake in the company but no voting rights, which would leave the three founders to operate the business in any way they saw fit.
Barbara and Mark Cuban colluded while Kevin was putting together his transaction. Mark was interested in accepting Barbara’s offer. He believed a partnership between the two businesses would be beneficial. Lori Greiner had an offer for the business. He cut her off before she could finish.
In the end, the trio agreed to take Mark and Barbara’s offer. They depart the Shark Tank with $400K for a 16% stake in the market.
Our Review of The Spooner
Most products of The Spooner are oval. Lids will be clamoring to get their hands on the fantastic products because of the ease of use. They’ll have no trouble figuring out how to use it.
The Spooner has terrific instruments for honing balance and practicing skills vital to learning surfing, snowboarding, and skateboarding. They have a simple recreational appeal that entices the customers to invest in their products.
Most skateboards have a deceptively simple design. They are made of almost unbreakable high-density polyethylene, resulting in a hard, smooth, lightweight spoon-shaped hard plastic device.
These toys are bound to get dirty. You will be pleasantly surprised by its strength and ability to maintain its vibrant color.
The Spooner’s spin boards and skateboards are incredibly portable, light, and compact. They are simple to store flat on a shelf, vertically against a garage wall, or tucked inside a toy bin because of their weight of around two pounds and a length of just under two feet.
- Made of high-quality, durable plastic
- The price is worth the deceptively simplistic design
- Spin and move easily
- Relatively cost-effective
- Lifetime warranty
- Can be scuffed
- Might cause injury if not operated under the supervision
- Not suitable for those who weigh more than 500 pounds
Who is it Best For?
Those drawn to anything with wheels, including bikes, trikes, skateboards, and scooters, will find these skateboards worthy. If you are someone interested in activities that require balance and jumping, such as trampoline or gymnastics, you will fall in love with The Spooner. It is also ideal for those with a lot of energy and continuously looking for ways to let off steam. Products from The Spooner can be used indoors and outdoors, which might pique your interest.
Are There Any Alternatives?
Kinderfeets offer skateboards that are somewhat similar to The Spooner’s products. However, these skateboards are steeper and made with plywood. They are also relatively more costly than The Spooner’s products.
Our Final Thoughts
The Spooner has balance boards, spin boards, and skateboards that will take your fun up a notch. These toys have a magically simple premise that provides hours of entertainment. You will be amazed at how many different innovative uses they come up with. Kids can enjoy these boards both indoors and outdoors.