BearTek Shark Tank Update

BearTek Gloves: Revolutionizing Safety and Convenience

Shark Tank Season 7 Episode 19 introduced viewers to BearTek Bluetooth gloves, created by Willie Blount and Tarik Rodgers.

BearTek gloves cater to athletes and outdoor enthusiasts, including runners, bikers, motorsports fans, and winter sports enthusiasts. It offers safety, convenience, and control by allowing users to operate digital devices remotely through finger motions.

These gloves are perfect for activities like skiing and cycling, where reaching for a phone can be dangerous.

Constructed from weather-resistant leather and nylon, BearTek gloves provide excellent protection against the elements while concealing their remarkable features.

Users can wirelessly control music, phones, or cameras by touching nodes on their thumbs.

BearTek Gloves: Revolutionizing Safety and Convenience

BearTek gloves are designed for adventurers of all kinds, offering options for traditional wear, snow sports, and riding.

With these innovative gloves, users can communicate, record videos, or listen to music without removing them, ensuring a safer and more comfortable experience.

Willie, an avid motorcyclist, wanted a way to control his iPhone’s music while riding. Tarik, a skier, wanted to operate his phone and camera without removing his gloves.

Together, they designed BearTek gloves featuring Bluetooth sensors embedded in the left hand. These sensors allow users to control various functions by tapping their thumb with another finger, all without removing the gloves.

The Bluetooth modules in the gloves’ wrist pockets enable communication with smartphones and cameras. Depending on the style and included modules, the gloves range from $79 to $250.

Although their initial Kickstarter campaign in 2012 didn’t succeed, they eventually raised $90,000 and partnered with the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship to bring BearTek to life.

The gloves quickly gained popularity among tech enthusiasts and athletes and are now available on Amazon.

Willie Blount and Tarik Rodgers, both from Texas, developed BearTek gloves after Willie, a motorcycle enthusiast and Marine Corps veteran, recognized the need for a safer way to regulate music while riding.

Tarik, a skier, wanted a device to take pictures, answer calls, listen to music, and control apps on the slopes. After eighteen months of research and development, they launched BearTek gloves.

Encouraged by friends, Willie and Tarik applied for Shark Tank’s open casting session in the summer of 2015. Despite the low acceptance rate, they were chosen to appear on the show in February 2016.

BearTek’s Shark Tank Pitch: A Glove-Controlled Technology Dream Falls Short

Willie and Tarik appeared on Shark Tank seeking a $500,000 investment for a 5% stake in BearTek. They highlighted a common issue for outdoor enthusiasts: the inability to listen to music while biking or skiing.

BearTek offers a solution by transforming gloves into smartphone controllers. They demonstrated this innovative technology by mimicking how the Sharks raise their hands. The glove-mounted module allows users to control various devices effortlessly.

BearTek positions itself as a tech company rather than just a product. They asked, “Who’s ready to be hugged by BearTek?” while showcasing their product.

Each glove features six touchpoints, each performing different commands, with the thumb serving as the primary control. The module is discreetly placed in a pocket behind the glove.

The gloves were initially released to validate the concept of the modules, with plans to enter the module business eventually. Currently, they are selling both gloves and modules.

In 15 months, BearTek sold 1500 units, generating a profit of $200,000. Tarik mentioned that he invested $500,000 to launch the company. They also revealed that military corporations are interested in their technology, valuing BearTek at $10 million.

Robert questioned whether just selling gloves could justify a $10 million valuation. Daymond expressed skepticism, stating, “It is not working.”

After a brief break, Daymond voiced his displeasure with their valuation, while the founders claimed they could raise $32 million.

Kevin pointed out that voice-activated helmets already exist, but Tarik argued that gloves are more reliable. Kevin felt the market had moved past them and decided to exit. Mark also withdrew, citing an unfavorable risk/reward ratio.

Daymond declined to invest, disagreeing with the valuation. Robert showed interest in products beyond gloves but was not willing to invest $10 million in the glove business.

Lori admired their effort but felt they lacked competence and needed to address several issues. Ultimately, she also decided not to invest.

Kevin concluded that their high valuation was the primary reason for their failure.

The duo left the Shark Tank stage without any deal from the Sharks for BearTek.

Final Deal: No deal between BearTek and Sharks.

BearTek After Shark Tank: A Journey of Innovation and Challenges

Even though BearTek didn’t get any deal from the Sharks, the product received a mild response from the viewers due to the Shark Tank effect.

Tarik’s expertly crafted video unveiled the reason behind launching a new product. Though the gloves were similar to those featured on Shark Tank, they now came with a dedicated app.

BearTek’s software configured glove usage across various devices, including WiFi and Bluetooth, for increased flexibility. Additionally, the updated version offered a liner option and allowed users to pair it with their preferred gloves.

BearTek After Shark Tank: A Journey of Innovation and Challenges

Tarik also announced plans for a developer kit, enabling third parties to create compatible gadgets. Initially, the Indiegogo campaign seemed unsuccessful, but further investigation showed otherwise.

In his further update, Tarik revealed that BearTek had raised $60,000, surpassing their goal. However, new challenges forced the team into a period of “Hibernation” to address these issues. Tarik thanked the backers and promised a stronger return.

Despite the campaign’s success, BearTek went dark in May 2019. Their website and social media accounts went dark, yet BearTek gloves are still available on Amazon.

Blount’s LinkedIn profile shows he started a new smartphone mount company in Columbia, Maryland, in February 2017.

Rodgers has been serving as Vice President of Marketing and Operations at Skin Specialists of Allen/Addison in Dallas, Texas, since April 2016.

Based on the above events, BearTek could not live up to the hype and eventually shut down after its appearance on Shark Tank. BearTek is out of business, and its effective net worth is $0.