Aventura, Fla. – Entrepreneurs who’ve scored investments on the ABC business reality show Shark Tank look at it as winning the lottery but still having to work. The millennial inventors of the AquaVault — a portable lockbox — hit the jackpot in a March 2015 episode, Season 6. Signing a deal with FUBU founder Daymond John catapulted their company’s valuation 6,500% in less than three years. They’ve attracted celebrity fans and have been featured in dozens of media outlets and shows including Good Morning America, The Today Show, The View, Rachael Ray and Fox News. The founders were featured recently in a Shark Tank update on Sunday, Jan. 14.
“My two partners and I took the biggest risk of our lives to leave our lucrative careers in finance to pursue the American dream of inventing a product and bringing it to market,” said Jonathan Kinas, co-founder and managing partner. “Not only did we invent a product, but we took it a step further and pioneered a market that was non-existent. Although we knew it was a long shot, we were determined to beat the odds.”
The original AquaVault is pill-shaped, white plastic box featuring a resettable-combination lock that attaches to almost any rod. The company rolled out a second version, the FlexSafe, in 2016. It’s made with black, slash-resistant fabric for ultimate portability.
The Aventura, Fla.-based company went from $87,000 in sales in 2014 selling only in the Miami area to millions globally. The AquaVault was originally designed to secure valuables on lounge chairs and has become a must-have attachment for bikes, boats, closets, hospital beds, strollers an anything else that has a rod. It is sold by national retailers — Bed Bath and Beyond, Disney and Ace Hardware — hotels, cruise lines, and, of course, online. The company’s valuation blasted from $300,000 when Kinas and his partners went on Shark Tank to $20 million most recently. Daymond John made an on-air deal of $75,000 for 25% equity in the company
From Vacation Nightmare To Startup
Kinas and his partners, Avin Samtani and Robert Peck, came up with the idea for a portable lockbox while on vacation. All of Kinas’ valuables were stolen while he took a dip in a hotel pool. He had hidden his belongings inside his shoes and put everything underneath a lounge chair.
The three founders spent two years developing a solution to poolside theft: the AquaVault. They gave up six-figure salaries, sold their homes and raided their retirement nest eggs to work on the business.
“We always expected the unexpected and conditioned ourselves to prepared for the inevitable series of temporary defeats that we knew was going to be part of the journey,” Kinas said.
Before AquaVault, Kinas was a Merrill Lynch financial advisor, overseeing $400 million in assets. Robert Peck owned an industrial contracting business that had large corporate and government contracts. Avin Samtani served as vice president at a private mortgage bank. They had no experience in manufacturing, selling retail or launching products.
“We knew absolutely nothing about the invention process and had zero direction or guidance from anyone,” said Kinas. “By pioneering an industry, we essentially paved our own path and learned countless lessons along the way.”
About Aqua Vault
AquaVault is a Portable Outdoor Travel Safe that was invented so you can lock up your valuables and go for a worry-free swim. It’s designed to fit over 95% of existing beach furniture. Once your valuables are secure, you can start enjoying yourself without worry. AquaVault donates a portion of all proceeds which will go to the Make-A-Wish Foundation to help children in need.
Company Name: Aqua Vault
Contact Person: Jonathan Kinas (Co-founder and Managing Partner)
Phone: +1 (305) 900-7127
Country: United States