Company: Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces

Founder: Jack Bonneau

Season: Appeared on season 8 in the week eight episode

Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces allows kids to jumpstart their entrepreneurial journey. Kids can operate their own drink stands or marketplace locations, all while learning the basics of business and making money.

Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces “set up all the dates each location, obtain the proper insurance, permits and provide you with your own stand and supplies so you can focus on greeting customers, selling, counting change, figuring out expenses, sales, profits and your tips,” according to their website. They offer children the chance to jumpstart their entrepreneurship journey by providing real-life experiences and business tips.

When Bonneau originally appeared on “Shark Tank,” he came in asking for $50,000 for 10 percent equity. The sharks liked the idea and were impressed with Bonneau’s own entrepreneurial spirit, however, many felt he needed to grow the business more. Ultimately, he earned an offer from guest shark Chris Sacca for $50,000 as a loan at two percent interest, contingent on drawing the loan down in stages and sharing his business lessons through podcasts and videos. Bonneau accepted.

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

Q&A with Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces’ Founder Jack Bonneau

What was your strategy for navigating “Shark Tank”?

My strategy was simple: give a great pitch, know my business and my numbers and be positive! When I was finally able to pitch in front of the Sharks, I felt that I had already won so anything that happened after that was just “more frosting on the cake,” that’s why I wasn’t as nervous as I could have been!

How has Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces changed since the episode was first recorded? Since it aired?

Well, I filmed in September and it was a shock to us that my air date was so soon in November. I had planned to open additional Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces locations for a total 5 around Denver, but I had to scale that back to 2 new locations because I got so busy due to my Shark Tank airing date being 2 weeks before Black Friday. My new locations were made even more successful because so many people had seen my episode!

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

Not a thing!

Who’s your favorite shark?

Well, it has to be Chris Sacca! But all the sharks were great, even Mr. Wonderful! When I knew I was going to pitch in front of the sharks and didn’t know that Chris was going to be one of them, I was hoping to do a deal with Mark!

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

My business started because I wanted the Star Wars Lego Deathstar. Once I got my Lego Deathstar, I wanted to share my great experience learning about entrepreneurship, business, financial literacy, developing social and life skills; while having fun and making money with others. As I was expanding locally and my story got into the New York Times, then on the Today Show, Shark Tank seemed like a great next step to reach more kids either by expanding my locations or inspiring other kids to do what I’ve been able to do. So yes, it was definitely the right move!

What are Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces’ next steps?

From my “Shark Tank” airing in November, we’re talking with a number of organizations, sponsors and families who want to have a Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces in their area. We’re also interested in finding organizations, sponsors, and individuals who would like to help us grow Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces to reach more kids and customers. I hope to announce soon my expansion of Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces outside of Colorado! In Colorado, we’re working with some great malls to create spring and summer programs for kids to operate my Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces in their area and also for the 2017 holiday season. These programs will be a model for Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces to expand to malls across the country. I’m also working on my video podcast that Chris Sacca thought it would be a great way to share my experiences with other kids online.

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

With my business, I see great opportunity to reach more kids through my marketplaces; both locally in their area and on online. Kids need a place to be able to sell their great items and have their inspirational stories told. I can see working with someone like Amazon, Etsy or maybe Google to create an online marketplace dedicated to kids who have great products to reach more customers and provide kids the inspiration, tools and information to create their own businesses!

Personally, I would say that I want to be able to reach more kids to learn, experience and develop all the great skills that you get from entrepreneurship. Whether you’re successful or not these skills will improve all other aspects of your life, school and your career; whether you become an entrepreneur or not.

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

What I share with other kids (and adults) is to find things that interest you and explore them, learn about them. By doing this you’ll hopefully find something you are passionate about. Then see if you can solve a problem or make a significant improvement in those areas that you are passionate about. Also, make sure that you’re having fun!

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

Getting on “Shark Tank” is a bit like winning the lottery, the odds are long and there are no guarantees! I would say to focus on your business, learn everything about it and make the best that you can be. If you do that you’ll have the strongest chance to possibly be on “Shark Tank.” And if you don’t, you’ll still have a great business!

Responses have been lightly edited for clarity and length

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