Why Mark Cuban is leaving ‘Shark Tank’—and 3 of his biggest moments on the show

Wealth

It’s official: Mark Cuban says he’s leaving ABC’s “Shark Tank” after more than a decade on the show.

The billionaire entrepreneur and investor plans to move on after Season 16 ends in 2025, he told The Hollywood Reporter on Monday.

“I just want to have a couple summers with my teens before they go off on their own,” said Cuban, 65, explaining his rationale for leaving the TV show after more than a decade. “Nothing to do with the show. I love it. I love being on it. I love what [it] represents and how it motivates entrepreneurs around the world.”

Cuban has been a mainstay on the popular program since debuting as a “Shark” investor and startup pitch judge in 2011. Leaving the show isn’t his only major piece of recent news: He’s agreed to sell a majority stake in the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks — which he’s held since 2000 — for $3.5 billion, retaining a minority stake and control of basketball operations, CNBC confirmed on Tuesday.

His 12 years — and counting — on “Shark Tank” have produced memorable moments, ranging from laugh-inducing to heartstring-pulling. Here are three of the most notable ones:

The largest offer in ‘Shark Tank’ history

During Season 6, Cuban made the biggest offer in “Shark Tank” history to Arum, Soo and Dawoon Kang, the sisters behind dating app Coffee Meets Bagel.

The Kang sisters sought $500,000 for 5% of their company, which aimed to use people’s social media accounts to connect them romantically with a “friend of a friend.” The episode aired in 2015, and at the time of its filming, the Coffee Meets Bagel wasn’t profitable — but had raised $2.8 million in funding.

Initially, the sisters declined to disclose how many users Coffee Meets Bagel had, with Arum only offering “several hundred thousand users” as a ballpark figure. Because of that, Cuban said he wouldn’t make them an offer.

“If you want an investment, you can’t not tell us,” Cuban said.

The other Sharks followed suit, citing the lack of profitability and what they considered an overly optimistic valuation of $10 million.

Then, Cuban came back with a question: “If I offered you $30 million for the [entire] company, would you take it?”

The offer marked the largest in “Shark Tank” history, and the sisters turned it down. “We see this business growing as big as Match.com, and you know how much revenue they’re generating? $800 million a year,” said Arum. “They’re becoming a billion-dollar revenue company, and we think this model and the product has potential to be as big as Match.”

Cuban commended the Kangs’ decision to leave the show without an investment offer, even calling their company “brilliant.” By 2018, the app’s valuation was between $50 million and $100 million, according to private company research firm PrivCo.

‘I like the idea so much, I’m going to take it’

You don’t often see an investor taking an entrepreneur’s idea and giving it to a competitor. Earlier this year, Cuban did just that.

On an episode that aired in April, Cuban fell in love with the concept of Parting Stone, a cremation alternative company that turns ashes into polished stones. Its founder, Justin Crowe, asked the show’s investors for $400,000 in exchange for 5% of his company’s equity.

The money would go toward automating his company’s processes to “get to a place of [stronger] profitability,” Crowe said.

Cuban quickly threw Crowe a curveball: He’d already invested in a startup called Eterneva, which turned ashes into diamonds, and he liked the idea of adding smooth, polished stones to Eterneva’s product line.

“We’re a direct competitor with you,” Cuban noted, adding: “I like the idea so much, I’m going to take it to [Eterneva’s CEO] and see if she can do the same thing.”

Crowe did manage to wrangle an investment offer from Lori Greiner and Kevin O’Leary: $400,000 cash for 10% equity, a $20 consumer royalty and a $12.50 business-to-business royalty. “There are two areas I invest in: weddings and death,” O’Leary said during the episode. “Recession proof.”

‘Dumbest marketing move ever’

If you ever find yourself pitching Cuban your business idea, be warned: A single misstep could spell quick failure and an early exit.

On a “Shark Tank” episode that aired last year, brothers Donovan and Trey Brown asked investors for $200,000 for 5% of their Los Angeles-based car air freshener company, Ride FRSH. Less than two minutes into their pitch, they handed Cuban an air freshener emblazoned with the logo of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors.

Cuban, who has owned the Mavericks for decades, was incensed. “Dumbest marketing move ever,” he said, throwing the air freshener to the ground. “You got to read your room. Wrong move, wrong time.”

The brothers ultimately agreed to a $200,000 deal with Barbara Corcoran, and apologized to Cuban. Later, they said the embarrassing moment was always part of their plan to “go viral.”

“How many people can say they baited a Shark … even better, the biggest Shark, and [still] came away with a deal?” the brothers told CNBC Make It in January.

Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to “Shark Tank.”

DON’T MISS: Want to be smarter and more successful with your money, work & life? Sign up for our new newsletter!

Get CNBC’s free Warren Buffett Guide to Investing, which distills the billionaire’s No. 1 best piece of advice for regular investors, do’s and don’ts, and three key investing principles into a clear and simple guidebook.

Articles You May Like

Traveling teachers work with families who travel the world — here’s what it pays
Carl Icahn wins seats on JetBlue board after taking stake in airline
A flood insurance quirk makes basements a bad place to keep your stuff
2 out of 5 industrial stocks are at record highs. Here’s our post-earnings outlook on all of them
HSBC shares sink 3% after pre-tax annual profit misses estimates on impairment costs