The 12th season of ABC's Shark Tank kicks off Friday, October 16. In the premiere episode, a father and his 15-year-old son from Cincinnati, Ohio, help the Sharks get creative while sharing their solution for storing paint efficiently. Two tech-savy entrepreneurs from Somerville, Massachusetts, put the pedal to the metal when they show off their portable electric vehicle charger. A husband and wife from Milltown, New Jersey, think they can smell success as they pitch their product designed to keep garments safe from bacteria and odor, while an entrepreneur from Portland, Oregon, tries to convince the Sharks he brought blankets into the 21st century.
Blake Mycoskie -- a serial entrepreneur, philanthropist and best-selling author most known for founding TOMS Shoes -- is the person behind the idea of One for One®, a business model that helps a person in need with every product purchased. A simple idea grew into a global movement: While traveling in Argentina in 2006, Mycoskie witnessed the hardships faced by children growing up without shoes. His solution to the problem was simple yet revolutionary: create a for-profit business that was sustainable and not reliant on donations. Mycoskie’s vision soon turned into the simple business idea that provided the powerful foundation for TOMS. Since its inception, TOMS Shoes has provided almost 96 million pairs of shoes to children around the world.
Mycoskie started the Social Entrepreneurship Fund to help early startups with core social missions get off the ground with much-needed funding. Since then, he has invested in over 25 social enterprises. This past spring, he co-founded his newest company,Madefor, a 10-month program that applies the principles of modern neuroscience, psychology and physiology to make the brain and body better. Created alongside scientists from Stanford, Harvard and other top universities, Madefor helps people learn and sustain positive habits and practices that have the greatest impact on their lives.
Kevin O'Leary received an extensive education abroad from Cambodia, Cyprus, Tunisia, Ethiopia, France and Switzerland. After earning his Master of Business Administration, he founded Special Event Television - which created original sports programs such as The Original Six and Bobby Orr and the Hockey Legends. In 1986, O'Leary founded the Softkey Software Products (later renamed The Learning Company), the first software company to apply the principles of consumer goods to software. By 1998, O'Leary's company was the undisputed world leader in educational, reference and home productivity software - which Mattel acquired in 1999 for $4.2 billion. In 2003, O'Leary co-founded Storage Now, a leading developer of climate-controlled storage facilities. Operating in 11 cities, it was soon acquired by Storage REIT in March of 2007 for $110 million.
Today, Kevin leads the O'Leary Finanacial Group, a group of companies that include O'Shares ETF's, O'Leary Publishing and an ever-growing roster of other businesses. He is also the founder and head sommelier of award-winning wine label, O'Leary Wines. Kevin is a guitarist, photographer, and best-selling author.
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