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4 Small-Business Lessons Learned in Reality TV Limelight

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By Caroline McMillan

Gagnon asked for $50,000 in exchange for a 10 percent stake in the company.

John offered the money, but he wanted an 80 percent stake since Gagnon’s shoes weren’t on shelves yet.

Not prepared to give away that much equity in his fledgling company (now called ReKixx), Gagnon said the deal never went through.

Gagnon still has his full-time job as director of business development for Microban in Huntersville, N.C., but since the show, he and John have met in person twice and exchanged about 30 calls and emails, Gagnon said.

For now, John is Gagnon’s high-profile mentor. And later, if ReKixx takes off, John has said he could become a business partner, or at least help him close a deal, Gagnon said.

“The due diligence comes after” the show, he said. “It’s not a rags-to-riches story. … But ‘Shark Tank’ was great to help me get my act together.”

©2013 The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C.)
Distributed by MCT Information Services

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