Zoobean was created by Felix Brandon Lloyd and Jordan Lloyd Bookey, based in Washington, D.C.
Zoobean curates children’s books and apps based on the children’s preferences in the system.
Former DC teacher of the year Felix and former Google K-12 Education head Jordan want Zoobean to be like “Pandora for children’s books and applications.”
Felix is a former DC teacher of the year. In episode 529 of The Shark Tank, they make a pitch.
Zoobean’s staff, which is made up of educators, librarians, and parents, works to matchbooks and applications to the needs and interests of each unique child on the Zoobean platform.
Zoobean generates revenue through two different methods: through its SmartList service, which finds books and applications for you that you can then buy yourself, and through its subscription service, which sends books directly to your inbox each month.
The Zoobean service is based on the concept of assisting parents in locating high-quality resources for their child’s early development.
Many of the “curators” are independent contractors who operate from home. Felix and Jordan are most likely seeking the Sharks for financial assistance to conduct some marketing.
What Is ZooBean?
Zoobean is an education-based company that encourages students to read and learn more about the English language.
Each of their four key product categories caters to a particular group depending on who the product is meant for: libraries, schools, consumers, and businesses.
Zoobean is an excellent companion for parents and educators who want to boost children’s literacy while exposing them to various reading materials.
Zoobean is developed by a husband and wife team with experience in children’s education and employs data science to build a “SmartList” of recommended books for children.
Zoobean also offers a curated service, in which a freshly selected book selection is delivered to you once a month.
It allows librarians to track data and increase student involvement through Beanstack for Libraries.
The company offers badge books, reading logs, sticker books for children, and Hourglass, a smart night light that can be connected to an app to track reading time at home.
|Entrepreneur||Jordan Lloyd Bookey and Felix Brand Lloyd|
|Product / Business||A literacy app for creating, managing, and measuring reading challenges.|
|Investment Asking For||$250,000 for 15% equity in Zoobean.|
|Final Deal||$250,000 for 25% equity in Zoobean.|
|Episode||Season 5 Episode 25|
|Business Status||In Business|
Who Is The Founder Of ZooBean?
ZooBean was founded by Felix Lloyd and Jordan Lloyd Bookey, married teachers.
The company began by curating collections of children’s literature. The ZooBean service allows subscribers to specify which books their children love reading, and ZooBean will then supply a different book to each child each month based on their reading ability.
Having studied television, radio, and film as an undergraduate at Syracuse University, he earned an MA in fiction writing at Washington University in St. Louis. Felix currently resides in New York City with his wife and two children.
Jordan and Felix Lloyd founded Zoobean as a method to distribute books to youngsters from non-traditional family backgrounds.
Zoobean’s system blends human and computational curation to produce customized reading lists for its users.
The library also offers a book-a-month service, in which families would receive a book depicting themselves, such as a book about an interracial family, each month.
Jordan and Felix developed cutting-edge tools for personalization and collaboration, such as SmartList, a Web-based suggestion engine still in use today.
The team developed a new app called Beanstack that can curate books for patrons so they can receive more personalized recommendations.
They have created an experience that is valuable and personal for readers of all ages.
ZooBean Before Shark Tank
For Felix and Jordan Lloyd, the founders of ZooBean, who have joined Shark Tank, a $250,000 cash offer has been made in exchange for 15 percent of their company.
Jordan and Colin’s story begins simply: they met as teachers before marrying and having children, but it was only after they became parents that the goal of cultivating their children’s love of reading became meaningful to them.
They found it challenging to find children’s books catered to their child’s specific interests or written for youngsters who came from a family “like theirs.”
Felix and Jordan are of different races, so they came up with the idea for ZooBean.
ZooBean offers a highly tailored subscription service for children’s books and a discovery tool for children’s books.
How Was The Shark Tank Pitch Of ZooBean?
Felix and Jordan appeared on Shark Tank seeking an investment of $250,000 for 15% equity in their firm ZooBean.
Kevin O’Leary quickly raises the issue of the expense of customer acquisition right off the top of his head.
Jordan says that the expense of acquiring a new customer is approximately $6.03. They had 85 subscribers at the show’s taping, despite only having been online for two months.
Lori inquires whether the site serves a need, and Mark Cuban clarifies by asking if the business has a “secret sauce” or something that distinguishes it from the competition.
Lori believes that the service is not sufficiently distinctive. She’s out of the house early.
Barbara Corcoran has confirmed lori’s opinion. She has also left the building. Robert Herjavec is the next to arrive.
Kevin O’Leary cannot motivate himself even though “this is my space.” He is “trying to find a way to get enthusiastic.” It is no longer his space.
Cuban believes that “trusted curation is the future” of the entertainment industry. He does not agree with the other Sharks when it comes to the value of the service.
He is interested in knowing whether the service can be extended beyond books. As well as curating television episodes and other items, he believes that Zoobean may be used to curate books and other publications.
He is willing to make a $250,000 offer in exchange for 30% of the business. Mark agrees to meet them in the middle of the range after the entrepreneurs’ counteroffer with a 20 percent offer.
They agree on a 25 percent share, and the pair walks away from the Tank with a Shark deal.
Final Deal: Mark Cuban agreed to invest $250,000 for 25% equity in ZooBean.
What Happened To ZooBean After Shark Tank?
ZooBean evolved into Beanstack, a “platform for reading programs and book recommendations for any institution, specifically libraries and schools.”
ZooBean, or rather, Beanstack, seems ideal for larger groups of young children rather than individual family members compared to earlier versions of the game.
The market has made a much shrewder judgment than we did. The program also includes electronic books and tools that will be used to assess or assess the information that young people have learned from reading books.
ZooBean’s evolution into BeanStack appears to be more focused on assisting children in enjoying reading while also subtly teaching them memory techniques through repetition.
Even a Badge system rewards readers who dedicate themselves to their reading with a badge that they can display on their BeanStack profile.
ZooBean Shark Tank Update
Zoobean waited almost a year to announce the deal, keeping it under wraps until broadcast.
The delay provided them with plenty of time to develop their web presence and improve their product offerings.
The company was also able to integrate new personalization tools and an online recommendation tool known as SmartList.
Cuban’s equity position decreased to 16 percent by the show aired, and the couple received an extra $500k in additional funding from other investors.
When airing their episode, they had concluded that curating children’s books would not be a viable business model.
The company changed its name to Beanstack and began focusing on educational institutions, libraries, and other child-serving organizations instead of individual families.
Beanstack is an online program that helps students who have difficulty reading. It looks as if the company’s restructuring has been successful as its revenues continue to grow.
The Beanstack curriculum was implemented in their first public library in 2015. Through 2017, they established themselves in 20 school districts and 600 public libraries.
They have established a presence in more than half of US libraries and have released a mobile app that individuals can use.
Additionally, Amazon’s Alexa Fund invested in the company in 2019. The company introduced free reading challenges through its Beanbright platform to prevent learning loss in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
As a result, more libraries have joined the platform. By April 2022, Zoobean annual revenue reached $5 million, confirming that they are still succeeding.
Is ZooBean Still In Business?
Zoobean is still in business as of April 2022, with annual revenue of above $5 million.
ZooBean has evolved significantly since the premiere of the show. Beanstack, formerly known as ZooBean, is a new program “created from the ground up specifically for libraries.”
The service helps 140 libraries in the United States and Canada showcase their books and notify patrons of upcoming events in their communities by alerting them of upcoming events.
Cuban was instrumental in establishing Beanstack in the Dallas Public Library system.