What Happened To Smart Wheel After Shark Tank?

The Smart Wheel is the brainchild of a group of Londonderry, New Hampshire-based young entrepreneurs. 

The young people are Paige Balcom, TJ Evarts, Emily Balcom, Brighton Evarts, Jaiden Evarts, and Kate Balcom. Their ages range from ten to sixteen! 

The Smart Wheel is not a silly craft product that these young entrepreneurs are offering to the Sharks; instead, they introduce them to a product that aims to establish an automatic warning system when a driver’s hands are removed from the steering wheel.

Smart Wheel is an acronym for Safe Motorist Alert for Texting Restriction. This high-tech device was developed to combat the deadly habit of texting and driving, an issue that claims far too many lives every year. 

It is offered as part of their Don’t DUIT (Drive While Impaired by Texting) public service campaign. 

They intend to launch a comprehensive education campaign to educate youngsters about the dangers of texting and driving. 

They are entrepreneurs and members of The Inventioneers, a student group dedicated to finding tomorrow’s answers today. 

The group is the owner of four patents. These teenage entrepreneurs are combining a business idea with a solution to a deadly problem, and their wits, attitude, and The Smart Wheel are certain to amaze the Sharks.

What Is Smart Wheel?

Smart stands for “Safe Motorist Alert for Texting Restriction.” Six teenagers and preteens coined the name “Inventioneers” for a Lego tournament. 

After introducing an intelligent steering wheel cover that alerts drivers when their hands leave the wheel, the team retained it. 

The cover effortlessly snaps on and off any size steering wheel. The technology activates lights and sounds and transmits data directly to your phone. 

It teaches the driver how to handle the wheel properly and re-focuses them if they get distracted. 

Smart Wheel Shark Tank Update

Additionally, it gives parents a report on their children’s driving habits. The children had only a prototype and required funding to construct the cover.

There are many countries where distracted driving is an epidemic, resulting in accidents and deaths of drivers worldwide. 

Smart Wheel was designed and developed by a group of teens and young entrepreneurs between the ages of twelve and eighteen. 

The entrepreneurs wanted to make driving safer for teenage drivers since they are prone to distractions. 

The youngsters envisioned SmartWheel being installed in every car on the planet to save lives.

SmartWheel is easily snapped onto any steering wheel and is ergonomically designed for the driver’s comfort. 

Distracted driving incidents are dramatically reduced by using light sensors and tones that alert the driver to distractions. 

A parent or guardian will be notified if a teenage driver is inattentive while behind the wheel.

Company NameSmart wheel
FounderTJ Evarts, Jaiden Evarts, Bryeton Evarts, Paige Balcom, Emily Balcom, and Kate Balcom
ProductDistraction-prevention steering wheel that is intelligent
Investment Seeking$100,000 for 15% equity in Smart Wheel
Final Deal$100,000 for 30% equity in Smart Wheel
SharkRobert Herjavec and Mark Cuban
Episode Episode 16 Season 4
Business StatusIn Business
WebsiteVisit Website

Who Is The Founder Of Smart Wheel?

The Smart Wheel was created by six extremely bright teenagers from New Hampshire who want to end texting and driving. 

They have now put a project that started to compete in the First Lego League Competition, which they won, in the position to possibly save lives, depending on whether or not the Sharks decide to invest in the Smart Wheel.

Smart Wheel Before Shark Tank

SmartWheel is a high-tech device created by a small group of entrepreneurs with a singular goal in mind. To increase the road safety of young people.

There is one thing that the majority of us do daily, and it is frequently the most dangerous activity we engage in, but very few of us ever consider the danger. 

Driving is one of the most difficult pastimes, the leading cause of death outside of health problems in Western culture, and young and inexperienced drivers are the most at risk.

A group of young entrepreneurs from New Hampshire addressed the problem, and they developed a high-tech product to help young drivers stay focused on driving and their cars on the road.

Even though that may seem fairly typical of Shark Tank applications, when you consider that the young entrepreneurs in question were all aged twelve to eighteen when they developed their product, you can recognize the exceptional quality of this group of entrepreneurs.

Paige, Emily, and Kate Balcom and TJ, Jaiden, and Breyton Evarts composed the group. 

The Inventioneers were born due to a Lego building contest, but that innocent start soon led to more serious ideas for commercial applications.

For young drivers to stay focused on the wheel, the Inventioneers created a steering wheel prototype. 

Patents were filed for the SmartWheel, but the group needed significant funding to complete production and develop the product.

How Was The Shark Tank Pitch Of Smart Wheel?

In February 2013, the inventors appeared before the sharks to promote their life-saving gadgets. 

As part of the deal, they sought a $100,000 investment and 15 percent of SmartWheel, along with any privileges associated with being a Shark partner.

During the pitch, distracted driving was discussed. According to TJ, each day, 18 teenagers die in vehicle accidents in the United States alone, and a major cause of these accidents is the hands-off driving of a young driver.

With SmartWheel, motorists will be alerted if they take their hands from the 9 and 3 positions. This alert will instruct a driver on properly holding the wheel and cause a distracted driver to come back to reality. 

Jaiden explained that the device could record such behaviors, allowing parents to monitor their children’s driving behavior at any time.

Following the pitch, Mark Cuban immediately inquired as to if the SmartWheel was a finalized product. 

Despite TJ acknowledging that the tank is a prototype, he expected that 75% of the $100,000 investment would go towards the production process.

Robert Herjavec inquired as to the sales strategy following the completion of the final product. 

TJ explained to him that the company initially intended to sell the Smart Wheel online, with a long-term goal of selling it at Big Box stores.

Barbara Corcoran enquired about the unit’s price. Though the exact cost price of the product was unknown, TJ estimated it to be about $50 per unit, and the company planned to offer it for about $200 per unit.

Kevin O’Leary’s remarks offended the young group of entrepreneurs doing well up to this point. 

Mr. Wonderful had an issue with the SmartWheel’s functionality; it sounded an alarm and could record a driver’s hands moving away from the wheel, but it did not stop the driver from moving their hands. 

A shock instead of an alarm is recommended for the SmartWheel to prevent bad driving. It is unclear whether Kevin was joking when he made that remark, but his inventioneers laughed obediently.

Mark Cuban inquired as to whether the SmartWheel had been subjected to any trials. Despite Breyton’s maturity, each of the youngest inventors said they had tested the product at MIT. 

When she continued, telling them that 98% of the MIT testers viewed the product as improving road safety, the sharks looked at her with admiration.

Sharks were impressed by TJ’s display, but he was only about to impress them more. The inventors met with President Barack Obama at the White House in their role as futuristic innovators. 

When the SmartWheel became available, the president indicated a wish to purchase one for his daughter.

When Daymond John revealed he had no experience with electrical manufacturing, he sounded genuinely sad when he expressed his desire to ‘Be a part of this.’ He believed he would add little value to the business, and so Daymond was fired.

Barbara Corcoran was skeptical about the entire premise. She considered that the product might be withdrawn too readily, and she was particularly critical of the device’s reporting capability. 

The SmartWheel’s functionality was TJ’s attempt to convince Barbara of its importance, but she would not change her mind. 

Barbara withdrew from the negotiations with the final declaration that ‘Kids don’t want parents staring over their shoulders.’

Kevin O’Leary applauded the inventors’ accomplishments. He praised them for bringing something from ‘An idea to the White House,’ but then he lost his humanity facade, revealing the shark. 

‘Imagine my surprise if you had a good idea,’ he remarked as TJ’s smile faded. Once the group had matured and created something worthwhile, he proposed bringing them back to the tank. 

He informed them that he would write them a cheque the next day, ‘but not today.’ Kevin was out after that unexpectedly severe criticism of the SmartWheel.

Smart Wheel Shark Tank Update

When he has successfully defended SmartWheel against Kevin O’Leary, he will formally offer the entrepreneurs. 

In exchange for 30% ownership, he offered $100,000, but only if a license agreement could be arranged with a car manufacturer.

Robert appeared pleased to have offered an offer to each inventor, but TJ remained composed. ‘Does anyone else wish to make that offer?’ he inquired of the other Sharks.

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‘Who am I?’ ‘How about a chopped liver?’ Robert Herjavec was asked, but he was unconcerned; like his other Sharks, he admired the young entrepreneurs’ poise and professionalism.

Robert was informed by Mark Cuban that he was willing to share the transaction equally with him but that there would be no restrictions regarding the licensing arrangement. He believed the business had more opportunities. 

Robert and he discussed the offer and agreed on over 30 percent stock ownership for a $100,000 investment without specifying anything else. TJ accepted the proposal swiftly on behalf of the inventors.

Did Smart Wheel Get a Deal On Shark Tank?

The Inventioneers featured on Season 4 Episode 16 of Shark Tank, demanding $100,000 in exchange for a 15% stake in their business. 

Their deal with Robert Herjavec and Mark Cuban estimated Smart Wheel value at $333,000 with a $100,000 investment of 30%.

Conflicts arose between the Shark investors and the entrepreneurs, as with previous Shark Tank transactions. 

They were unable to reach an agreement on licensing the SmartWheel exclusively to automobile manufacturers, and hence the transaction fell through.

What Happened To Smart Wheel After Shark Tank?

Robert and Mark Cuban, the Inventioneers, were unable to agree on the final conditions of their proposed deal despite their commitment, dedication, and remarkable bargaining skills.

Although the team was inspired and benefitted from the experience, and the company was happy with the offer, further discussions broke down. In early 2014, the SmartWheel website updated the portion. Smart Wheel decided not to pursue Shark funding. 

No additional explanation was supplied, but it was evident that the SmartWheel firm was desperate for funding.

The company launched a crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo soon after the Sharks and SmartWheel announced they would not collaborate. 

They were looking for $50,000 to finish the production process. The campaign was not a huge success, raising a little over $2,000 by its conclusion. 

Unfortunately, it appears that a handful of the 39 backers were less than pleased with the business following the campaign’s conclusion. 

A backer felt ‘ripped off’ after waiting over a year for a SmartWheel and receiving no response to numerous inquiries.

After poring through the well-presented and polished SmartWheel website, I realized the issue: the SmartWheel was not yet for sale, even in 2018, more than three years after the inventors originally appeared on Shark Tank.

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Its Facebook page stays updated about media interest and the Smart Wheel concept. 

The product has been highlighted on NBC’s Today show, MSNBC, and various other high-profile programs. 

Although the product’s creative design and commendable emphasis on safety have been widely lauded, it is unavailable to purchase online. Despite an exhaustive search, I have been unable to locate any retail stores that sell it.

It would be incredible if a potentially useful and important product like the SmartWheel never reached broad availability. 

It may be possible to overcome the final manufacturing hurdle soon. Still, until then, it will be up to us to work hard behind the wheel without assistance from those young, astute inventors who could not otherwise work so hard. 

Smart Wheel Shark Tank Update

Deals on Shark Tank are not always successful. Shark investors and entrepreneurs failed to agree on a license exclusively for automobile manufacturers, so the agreement fell through. 

However, the youthful inventors have not given up. A successful Indiegogo campaign to bring the Smart Wheel to market in 2015 was led by now-19-year-old CEO TJ Evarts. 

Was the Inventioneers’ decision to leave the Sharks behind a wise one? It’s too early to tell, but with a product that drew the attention of two Sharks, they appear to be heading in the right path.

Those who want to pre-order the device on the corporate website can still do so through September 2021. TJ Evarts remains the CEO, and he and his sisters continue to “work” on refining the product. Perhaps one day we will see it.

Is Smart Wheel Still In Business?

The inventors remained dedicated to their dream and pursued it despite all obstacles. Smart Wheel, led by 19-year-old CEO TJ Evarts, launched an Indiegogo campaign in 2015 to fund the start of production. The campaign failed, raising only $2,000, much less than the $50,000 target.

The campaign’s 39 backers were upset by the end, and one felt ripped off by having to wait more than one year for SmartWheel, while the entrepreneurs refused to answer the countless questions.

Various credible news outlets, including NBC’s Today show, MSNBC, and others, have highlighted the product, receiving several positive reviews from the audience. 

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The teenagers had the opportunity to present their idea at the White House, endorsed by former US President Barack Obama.

Smart Wheel has not yet manufactured any products but keeps a presence on social media and maintains its website while looking for partners to help with production and marketing.

The company believes that it’s capable of preventing preventable accidents and other deaths with the device.

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