UC Berkeley School of Architecture grad Anton Willis dreamed up the Oru Kayak four years ago as a solution to fitting a boat into his small San Francisco apartment. Using the principals of origami, Willis created a lightweight yet robust kayak out of corrugated plastic, and designed it to fold from a 12’ boat into an easily storable and portable case. Best of all, transforming it from box to boat takes just a few minutes.
Already well known in the outdoor recreation community, the team at Oru Kayak jumped at the opportunity for national exposure and the chance to reel in a Shark as a business partner when they appeared on last week’s episode of Shark Tank. As you’ll see from the clip below the move paid off.
The Oru Kayak team persuaded Shark Tank’s Robert Herjavec and landed a $500,000 deal for 25 percent. The deal gave their start-up a $2 million evaluation and with the national exposure to over seven million viewers the orders came flooding in. A message on their website reads, “Please note that due to the sudden increase demand, there may be a substantial wait time for delivery. New customers will receive an email within 10 days of placing an order with an approximate delivery date.”