Business Telegraph

The Entrepreneurs

How rejection from Shark Tank grew Peak Chocolate

  • Written by Raphael Freedman


It takes a certain amount of tenacity and belief to start a business. Particularly, one based on a product no one has ever seen before. It takes even more to persevere after being brutally shut down on live television and told to ‘go back to school’. That's tough.


Coming in to the Shark Tank, Peak Chocolate had $70,000 in sales in the previous 12-months. 1-year since the show, Peak sells over $35,000 worth of upgraded dark chocolate in just one month, with no signs of slowing down its growth rate.

 

Rory and Raph were seeking $50,000 to keep their dream alive. Enough capital to order a large quantity of their special concoction of high-grade dark chocolate and workout supplements to satisfy their online orders. However, not only did they leave with not a single offer to consider, the Sharks made sure to drown their spirits while they went about their rejections. It was brutal shut down on the Show, for the ‘Bondi Gym Junkies’, Raph and Rory, who were made examples of.

 

Waking up the day after, things hadn’t improved much, with articles doing the rounds on the internet mocking their reactions and performance. Janine Alice criticised them for having ‘illegal wording on the packaging' and that the product was ‘against the law’. Other Sharks suggested that there are no real sales, no evidence that the product worked and ultimately were told to ‘go back and finish Law School’. The boys were left to ponder if they should continue with Peak Chocolate.

 

However, there was one big silver lining to an otherwise bleak situation. Sales and some very happy customers. After the show, orders came flooding in to try the now infamous supplement infused dark chocolate and overwhelmingly everyone loved it.  With hundreds of positive 5 star reviews coming in, people described the chocolate as giving them a ‘serious buzz’ and reporting that it also tasted ‘delicious’. It was these messages that reminded the boys to keep their heads up and not to quit on their dreams.

 

12-months on, Peak has expanded out of the ‘gym only' market and created a cognitive enhancement product to finally conquer the 2pm slump. With a mission to create delicious dark chocolates that upgrades your life, they focused on the customer and  listened to what the people wanted. The market was screaming for a product to improve focus and attention as the day drags out. That is exactly what the boys delivered with Peak Focus. Staying true to their foundations, the products in the chocolate all contain a minimum viable dose, meaning you get full exposure to the benefits, all while keeping the chocolate as a delicious snack.

 

Having partnered with EPIK foods, PEAK has two products on the shelf with a third coming! The boys created a dark chocolate snack that’s low in sugar and vegan friendly with real benefits. How could the sharks miss this one…?

 

Raph and Rory now described the Shark Tank as ‘the best thing that ever happened to Peak’, but admit that it took a few months to see it from that perspective. Now with Shark Tank firmly in the rear view mirror, they are looking to continue their growth trajectory in 2019 and place themselves in the top list of Shark Tank failures that made it big and left the Sharks regretting not investing in.

 

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