This week, Tilman Fertitta meets with celebrity photographers Jennifer Graylock, Katy Winn and Lisa Spruill of Face Chairs.
Face Chairs is a customizable furniture company that allows you to get some quality face time with your favorite celebrities. They offer chairs, benches and pillows, all with quality photographs adorning the top. Some of their current offerings include an ocean pillow, trailer park queen pillow, lily pad ottoman and even post-election Hillary Clinton and President Donald Trump chairs. Prices range from $32 to $2,600. Custom orders range from $200 to $6,000. Red-carpet photo offerings have included Ryan Gosling, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Lady Gaga and former President Barack Obama.
Fertitta likes their “fun and whimsical” chairs and is even more impressed when they present a chair with his own face on it. He thinks the chairs are much too expensive and believes they need to produce larger quantities to get the price down. They did $30,000 in revenue last year. He challenges them to design chairs for Bubba Gump.
He is immediately disappointed with the prototypes, which only feature the Bubba Gump logos and shrimp. He pushes them to be more creative but while he tests what was presented, he notices that the dye comes up when cleaning the chair, which could be a problem with white clothing. The pricing and markup are also still issues for him as they relate to the commercial restaurant business. He gives them another chance to get the pricing and design right.
— Billion Dollar Buyer (@BillionDollarTV) February 8, 2017
Their new chairs feature a revamped logo chair but Fertitta puts the dye to the test by having people in white pants sit on it. Ultimately, all the pants turn out clean because of the new vinyl fabric, which impresses Fertitta. He hopes to see more original photos and an improved price in the boardroom.
In the boardroom, they present Fertitta with new professional photos that feature the Bubba Gump logos and shrimp. They propose 650 bar stools in 43 locations at $250 each. The price is very discouraging to Fertitta and he questions their business model. He says they need to scale up in order to lower their production costs. Because they’re not at the right point with the pricing, he decides not to make an offer. He does, however, commission them to make a chair that he could auction off at a charity event, which will help get their name out.
At the Children’s Charity Gala six weeks later, their custom Foreigner chair sells for $9,500.
Social Media Reacts to Face Chairs’ Appearance on “Billion Dollar Buyer”
— Tammy Motola ❤️ (@tmotola) February 8, 2017
— Lamar Tyler (@LamarTyler) February 8, 2017
— Andy Kunzmann (@andykunzmann) February 8, 2017
They nailed those chairs #BillionDollarBuyer
— Paul Medica (@PaulMedica) February 8, 2017
The ladies are having a hard time. They have the typical small business issue – old, inefficient business models. #BillionDollarBuyer
— Tretta Bush (@TrettaBush) February 8, 2017
These ladies are clueless! They just marked up that cheap looking chair! #BillionDollarBuyer
— Sylvia Ramirez (@AjntB2Sli) February 8, 2017
— Cristina321 Gaming (@Cristina321Game) February 8, 2017
According to CNBC, the reality television show “introduces promising companies across the country to one of America’s most successful businessmen: billionaire hospitality mogul Tilman Fertitta, Chairman, CEO, and sole shareholder of Landry’s, Inc.” Featured entrepreneurs present their small business to Fertitta in the hopes that he will place a large purchase order. But before they make their pitch, they must prove to the hospitality mogul that their product is worth it through challenges and customer feedback.
What are your thoughts on Face Chairs? Do you think Fertitta should have made an offer? Sound off in the comments section below!