Le-Glue: Made for Kids, By a Kid
Children usually seek out the guidance of a trusted adult to solve their problems. But sometimes they don’t, sometimes the adults don’t even notice the problem. So when they’ve broken their toys and made a mess, what is a child to do?
Tripp Phillips has the answer. He showed The Sharks why you should never send a man to do a boy’s job. On Episode 1 of Season 10, the enthusiastic 12-year old entrepreneur, along with his sister, Ally, and father, Lee, walked into the Shark Tank looking for an investment for his product, Le-Glue.
Le-Glue is a non-permanent, non-toxic adhesive used to secure Lego and other children’s building blocks together. It dissolves in water, so kids can use it repeatedly on their toys. During his witty presentation, Tripp revealed his frustration over never being able to play with the toys he built before they fell apart. This was the reason he and his father created Le-Glue, and luckily, it solved two issues. Children could build and play with their Lego, and adults wouldn’t have to worry about accidentally stepping on their children’s toys.
The young entrepreneur confidently requested $80,000 in exchange for 15% of the company, an ask so favorable that The Sharks didn’t bother commenting on the company’s valuation. The product’s value was clear, and Tripp had the numbers, accolades and vision to back it up. Over its lifetime, Le-Glue had sold over $125,000 worth of product and was already secured by a utility patent, making Tripp one of the youngest patent holders in U.S. History! His clever goal was to partner with various toy brick manufacturers, negotiate a license agreement, and get Le-Glue included in all of their toy kits. But what truly made The Sharks perk up was the impressive margin between the 43 cents it cost to make Le-Glue and the $8.99 (now $5.99) price it was being sold for on his website.
Hearing these numbers, it’s no surprise that some of The Sharks decided to jump into the frey. Kevin wasted no time, offering to provide an $80k investment in exchange for 50% of licensing royalties until he recouped his initial investment, after which, a partnership in perpetuity would be established where Kevin had a 20% stake. Kevin further sweetened the deal by basing his shares on the condition that he could successfully negotiate a licensing agreement. Knowing a great deal when he saw one, Jamie Siminoff, the former contestant turned Shark, commended Kevin on his “wonderful” offer before backing out.
Daymond, however, stepped forward to outbid Kevin with a simpler offer of $80k in exchange for 25% of the company. At this point, Lori could see that either deal would lead Tripp and his family to success, so she decided to not get her fins wet this round and also backed out. Mark soon followed suit and backed out as well, saying that he couldn’t provide an offer better than the two that were already laid out.
Le-Glue was nicely positioned to jump to the next level, but instead of immediately giving in to either offer, Tripp made Daymond a savvy counteroffer. His set his new ask at $80k in exchange for 20%, but Daymond wasn’t impressed and stuck to his original offer, as he was already asking well below his usual 33% stake. With 3 sharks out and two great offers floating in front of him, Tripp was left to make a choice. After a nervous moment of silence and quick word in his father’s ear, he announced to Mr. O’Leary that he’d like to do business.