The Shark Tank episode 801 – the season 8 premiere – featured Justin Kittredge pitching ISlide, his custom slide sandals. Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Antonio Brown joined him in the Tank!
Justin established the company in 2013 after a 13-year career in the footwear industry. Since then, the company has been recognized as the undisputed leader of slide sandals.
Slide sandals are similar to flip-flops but have a single strap over the foot rather than the thong straps.
iSlide was created by Justin Pearce after he left his job as Reebok’s director of basketball footwear products to create an unmet need for off-court footwear.
He desired a comfy Slide Sandal that could be customized in any way. The company also offers merchandise with the names of sports teams, institutions, and others.
Also, customers can purchase ISlides in bulk for their organizations.
iSlides are built with Waves Gel soles, which are a patent-pending technology. You’ll feel like you’re walking on water with the built-in arch support.
You can choose your strap’s color and customize it with any image or message you like on the company’s website.
iSlide sold 15,000 pairs in 2015 and is on track to increase its revenue by $1 million in 2016. Kittredge will likely need Shark’s help with inventory management and sourcing.
Will a Shark hand Kittredge some money and convince her to invest?
What Is iSlide?
ISlide is an online platform that allows you to design your slip-on or slide sandals. A customer is encouraged to add graphics (NBA logos, flags) and a photo with or without text after selecting size and background color. The possibilities for design are limitless.
ISlide specializes in slide sandals, which are sandals with no back and open toes that allow you to slip your foot right in.
ISlide prides itself on creating the most comfortable sandal available on Earth by using only the finest materials and professional craftsmanship.
ISlide sandals are called “The Mantra” because they embody the original design. An egg crate insole with a massage function and support massages the foot.
You may customize the Mantra by adding your graphics and text. The company also offers an extensive selection of pre-designed logos for NBA franchises.
|Product||Customized athletic sandals of the highest quality.|
|Investment Asking For||$500,000 for 5% equity in iSlide|
|Final Deal||No Deal|
|Episode||Season 8 Episode 1|
|Business Status||In Business|
Who Is The Founder Of iSlide?
Justin Kittredge is the creator and founder of ISlide. He worked tirelessly to develop his concept and brand.
Justin Kittredge has been a footwear expert for two decades and started his ISlide quest in 2013. In the past, Justin worked in the basketball footwear area at Reebok.
Justin designed comfortable casual slippers that would answer a fundamental need. The slip-on shoe features a single flap and a sole made from wave gel, creating a unique sensory experience similar to walking on water.
One of the best parts about this experience is that you can customize the design and insert your logos and messages on the flip-on top side.
You can use the Website to create phrases, styles, and photos that are creative, fantastic, and reflect your individuality.
iSlide Before Shark Tank
iSlide founder Justin Kittredge was previously employed by footwear manufacturer Reebok.
He was able to secure an internship there during his senior year of college, and then he was hired as a product marketing and development specialist.
Justin spent ten years working for Reebok before being laid off in 2014, and the experience taught him a great deal.
Justin was also poised to utilize his networking and contacts to further his iSlide business.
Interestingly, Justin had already gained some popularity before his Shark Tank appearance. He set two Guinness World Records in 2009 while competing in basketball.
Business Wire reported that Justin won this award for shooting 64 unassisted free throws in two minutes and 16 blindfolded free throws in one minute.
Considering that the previous record was only five flings in 60 seconds is especially impressive. He ran an organization called Shooting Touch, Inc. while his job at Reebok required him to practice.
When he was president of this company, he taught young boys and girls from Boston basketball.
Can the Sharks trust the entrepreneur with their business matters despite his undisputed skills as a basketball player?
How Was The Shark Tank Pitch Of iSlide?
Justin appeared on the Shark Tank requesting an investment of $500,000 in exchange for a 5% stake in iSlide. Daymond is not happy about it.
He discusses his background and his relationships with numerous celebrities in the sports and entertainment industry in his talk.
Then he presents each Shark with a pair of custom-made iSlides. Robert put his sandals to the test and declared them the most comfortable sandals he’s worn.
Justin asserts that he’s generated $1.5 million in sales over the past three years when Daymond challenges his valuation.
He spends $15 on each pair of handcrafted sandals that he sells for $50. Almost all of his revenue is generated from drop shipping and sports teams, with only 15% coming from custom orders.
DJ Khalid is the drop shipper. Justin personalizes the sandals, and then he arranges for them to be shipped directly to the consumers.
Antonio Brown enters the stage wearing his slides just as Mr. Wonderful eviscerates Justin.
He enjoys them and sells a couple of them on his website. Lori says that nothing is stopping other people from doing the same. She is out.
Robert has expressed an interest in the slides and offers $500,000 for a 20% stake.
Justin inquires whether he may hear other offers — a common blunder in the Shark Tank. Kevin takes the easy way out and leaves.
Barbara exits, blaming the appraisal. Mark declares that the investment was unsuitable for him and exits.
Daymond also leaves, blaming the valuation once more. Justin counters with 10%, but Robert is unmoved.
Justin will not either, despite Antonio Brown’s coaxing. He departs without concluding a contract.
What Happened To iSlide After Shark Tank?
ISlide got a huge boost from the Shark Tank effect even though it did not land a transaction, according to Forbes.com.
The company has a licensing agreement with Nickelodeon, partnered with New Kids on the Block and celebrities, and joined forces with Fanatics, a large online retailer of licensed sports merchandise.
The ISlide brand is associated with rapper 2 Chainz, actors Mark Wahlberg and Ice Cube, and comics Ellen Degeneres and Chelsea Handler.
The shoes were rated five stars out of 77 reviews on the company’s website, with most customers stating they are quite comfortable and the customer service is excellent.
Additionally, they have five-star evaluations on their Facebook page, which nearly 8,000 individuals follow.
The iSlide Facebook page is frequently updated with updates about events such as partnering with Ellie Fund, a cancer-fighting non-profit organization, during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
iSlide appears to be doing quite well, despite its absence of a contract with Shark Tank investors.
iSlide Shark Tank Update
Justin signed relationships with Nickelodeon, Fanatics, and many sports and entertainment figures following the original air date.
He also has a licensing agreement with the NBA and Major League Baseball, selling through Dick’s Sporting Goods.
iSlides continues to thrive despite a challenging 2020. He saw a 25% increase in annual revenue until the global Covid-19 outbreak.
He sources a large portion of his sales from sports teams, both college and professional, so when sports were canceled, his sales also dried up.
There was also a problem with the supply chain. He was forced to lay off staff and submit an application for the government’s Payroll Protection Plan.
Everything is gradually returning to normal as of February 2022, and the athletes are again participating in sports.
He has recovered and hopes to reclaim the $9 million in revenue he enjoyed before the outbreak.
August 2021 marks the launch of the company’s partnership with Perfect Game, a major youth baseball and softball platform and scouting service worldwide.
Personalized and branded Perfect Game slides will be provided to the clients under the agreement.
iSlide was still suffering from supply chain issues in January 2022, but it had grown to a $10 million business with a global brand.
Is iSlide Still In Business?
iSlide is still in business and thriving even though he didn’t get any deal on Shark Tank. Brown asserts that “business is still booming” following the conclusion of Shark Tank.
ISlide has since relocated its factory and offices (to Boston) and deployed “a beast of an ERP system” while developing the company, which recently celebrated its fifth anniversary.
iSlide’s most significant achievement was securing a large licensing deal with the NBA. iSlides have been sold at Dick’s Sporting Goods, Fanatics, and the NBA Store, among other places.