BenjiLock

Company: BenjiLock

Founder: Robbie Cabral

Season: Appeared on season 9 in the week 3 episode

BenjiLock is a rechargeable padlock that uses fingerprint technology to protect valuables. The lock, which features both fingerprint technology and traditional keys, can be used on bags, bikes, lockers and more.

According to Digital Trends, the padlock “supports up to four distinct fingerprints and saves them in an encrypted chip, allowing users to easily crack open the 7-pin device with a finger of their own choosing.” The device can also be opened using traditional keys in the event that an unauthorized individual attempts to unlock it, which causes all information to be deleted. It is available in stainless steel, white, black, brass and copper and costs $80.

When Cabral originally appeared on “Shark Tank,” he came in asking for $200,000 for 10 percent equity. The sharks were all very impressed with the rechargeable padlock and Lori Greiner found it telling that the product was honored at CES 2017, a consumer electronics trade show. Everyone but Mark Cuban made offers—Greiner and Kevin O’Leary both offered $200,000 for 15 percent while Barbara Corcoran and guest shark Alex Rodriguez teamed up for $200,000 for 20 percent. Ultimately, Cabral accepted a deal with O’Leary.

Cabral spoke with Business 2 Community about BenjiLock’s experience on the show and what their next steps are. Take a look at the Q&A below:

Q&A with BenjiLock’s Founder Robbie Cabral

What was your strategy for navigating “Shark Tank”?

My strategy for navigating “Shark Tank” was to follow my personal gut. I was looking for someone that would help support and guide me through the sea of sharks in the business world, but also support my creativity. Most of all, I was looking for the shark that shared the same vision I had.

How has BenjiLock changed since the episode was first recorded? Since it aired?

BenjiLock did not change much after the recording, but the major change came after it first aired. Our website completely crashed, our email inbox was inundated with fan mail from all over the world. To be able to inspire others to take that leap of faith, I’m absolutely speechless. It’s a truly exciting time! Also, during the process, BenjiLock locked in a licensing partner with Hampton Products, the makers of Brinks Home Security™.

Is there anything you would have changed about your time spent in the tank, including your pitch and valuation?

I would not change anything at all. I spoke straight from my passion and my heart.

Who’s your favorite shark?

All of the sharks are truly amazing as each of them bring their own experience and expertise, but in the end, I truly went with my gut and that was Mr. Wonderful!

Do you think “Shark Tank” was the right move for your business?

First of all, I was absolutely shocked when I found that I made it through to pitch in front of the sharks. The “Shark Tank” receives over 50,000 applications every season and to be part of this experience is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I told myself that regardless of the outcome, I just had to do it. Being a one-man army, I felt that “Shark Tank” was a great move for myself and my company. To pitch my passion in front of such powerful entrepreneurs of the likes of Alex Rodriguez, Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O’Leary, Lori Greiner and Mark Cuban—that to me was truly the American Dream.

What are BenjiLock’s next steps?

We’re taking the road to Las Vegas for CES 2018! We’ll be in booth #50013 in the Eureka Park, introducing the BenjiLock family and who knows, maybe a shark bite appearance! Also, preparing for our product launch for “Back to School” 2018 thanks to our recent partnership with Hampton Products. It’s definitely a lot of hard work, but I’m very, very excited! My goal has always been to not only make this idea a reality, but to also provide for my family and be able to create jobs, that’s what I really want to do! To the ones that always told me “NO,” I’ll now be the one telling them “YES.”

Where do you see this industry in 5-10 years?

The impact of the technology on its own is eye-opening. We’re living in an instant gratification world and need everything now, easy and convenient. It’s happening as we speak and I can definitely see it evolving towards that path.

What would you say to people who want to start their own business?

Go for it and see it through, despite what others tell you. There will always be someone there to say don’t and point out all the negative—the best is to stay positive and have faith. You’re the only one that drives the engine and if you ever feel trapped, seek guidance and mentorship. Chase your dream, follow your heart and focus on your vision, not the money. Most of all, stay humble and be true to yourself!

What advice would you give to entrepreneurs who want to make it on “Shark Tank”?

Attend the “Shark Tank” open calls and when you do, just be true to yourself and to your company, product or service. That’s all it takes!

Responses have been lightly edited for clarity and length