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10 September 2015 | beautystorebusiness.com Finalists were carefully interviewed and reviewed on several criteria, including proof of concept, presentation, business health and uniqueness. The five finalists that participated in the inaugural Beauty Pitch event were 100% Pure, 18.21 Man Made, Hair Con- struction, LightStim and Zenagen Hair Care. 100% Pure won the grand prize: a one-year mentorship with Shark Tank star Cuban. At the event, sponsors TSG Consumer Partners and CircleUp also announced investments with two Beauty Pitch finalists. TSG awarded a $10,000 cash-infusion prize to 100% Pure and highlighted the company as a future potential investment candidate. Additionally, CircleUp selected 100% Pure and LightStim as potential candidates for future investments. 18.21 Man Made was picked as the Audience Choice Award. The company will receive exhibit space at Cosmoprof North America 2016 and a one-year PBA membership. The winner was chosen via live polling during the finals event. "Beauty Pitch shines a spotlight on what the beauty industry is all about— innovation, determination and the entre- preneurial spirit," says PBA's Sleeper. "It was exciting and inspiring to watch these companies pitch their hearts out for a chance to win resources that will help them continue to grow. Beauty Pitch is an exciting addition to all that takes place at PBA Beauty Week and Cosmoprof North America. We're already looking forward to next year, and thinking about what we can do to expand our reach." The 10 semifinalist companies inclu- ded Alexandria Professional, Industrias T.TAIO/Daily Concepts, Lamas Beauty, Nanokeratin System and Rock Your Hair/ O'Rourke Holdings. For details and photos about next year's event, visit beautypitch.com and follow #BeautyPitch for updates. Go to beauty storebusiness.com to see our extensive pre- and post-event Beauty Pitch coverage, including video interviews right after the event with 100% Pure, Cuban and DeJoria. 100% PURE U.S. Headquarters: San Jose, California 100percentpure.com Here is our post-event Q&A interview with Ric Kostick, 100% Pure co-founder and CEO: Beauty Store Business : How did it feel when they announced 100% Pure as the winner of Beauty Pitch? KOSTICK: We were prepared for a win, but we were still so surprised when we actually won! Susie [Wang, co-founder] and I both started tearing up when TSG presented us with the $10,000 check, and when Mark Cuban told us that he chose us, we were really excited. We really wanted a mentorship from Mark. How did the real-life pitch compare to your expectations? I've never spoken in front of so many people, so I was nervous. I spent about 10 hours practicing my pitch. Susie told me not to memorize it and just speak from my heart, which ended up working out best. You don't realize the intensity of it all until you're up there. What does the win include? TSG Consumer Partners will meet with us [shortly] and is giving us $10,000. As part of our mentorship, Mark's business development manager said we could call him anytime, and Mark asked us to email him once per week with an update on financials and any questions we may have. How often will you communicate with him? The plan is to email him once per week, but so far we've been communicating daily. Mark is a big email person and is great at responding. He's expressed inter- est in being even more involved, so we'll see what that looks like down the road. In what ways do you hope the next year will impact 100% Pure? Based on distribution opportunities, Web development, product development and a new store, we're projecting that we'll double in size in 2016—even without outside capital. We also plan to bring in a spokesperson for our makeup to grow the color side and show how well the 100% Pure makeup performs. Do you have advice for those interested in seeking out an investor? Investors will look at your financials and want to know that you're profitable, so know your numbers before you approach anyone. Finding an investor takes time. If you're a smaller company, start some- where, such as CircleUp, where they target different investor groups. Make sure you check in with them a couple of times per year so they know you're there, and always show your passion. No one wants to partner up with someone whose mission is just to make money. If you're in it just to make money, you're probably not going to succeed. You really have to have a different mission to really hit success. Here is our pre-event background mini story on 100% Pure: Ten years ago the team of Ric Kostick, Susie Wang and James Wang, decided that they wanted to make the healthiest cosmetics possible after Susie witnessed an ingredient she was working with warp a lab table. A year later she noticed how blackberries stained her skin, leading the team to begin using pigments from fruit in all of its products. "We recently cel- ebrated our 10-year anniversary, and I was reflecting on the effort we've put into helping more than 1 million women," said Kostick, co-founder of 100% Pure. "But I wanted to be more impactful and improve more lives, which is when I started thinking about finding an investor. Around the same time, a friend of mine mentioned Beauty Pitch. Win or lose we will be in front of thousands of buyers and dozens of investors, which could take us to the next level," added Kostick. With only three minutes for the on-stage pitch, Kostick said he's anxious about what to focus on, especially since he's been fol- lowing Cuban and DeJoria for years. "Our Beauty Pitch application video focused on our history, where we want to take the company and the fruit pigments that set us apart," said Kostick. "Our ultimate goal with this whole experience is to get in front of buyers and grow our distribution channels." And here are our other pre-event background mini stories: 18.21 MAN MADE Headquarters: Dallas 1821manmade.com "Our business is only one-year-old, but people have told us we should be on Shark Tank," said Aston LaFon, co-founder and director of sales and marketing at Top image courtesy of 100% Pure/middle photo of 100% Pure CPNA 2015 booth by Marc Birenbaum, Beauty Store Business/bottom image courtesy of 18.21 Man Made Continued on page 66