All five investors declined to put money into LoveSync, criticizing the product's intent to replace communication and slamming the founders' lack of a persuasive business plan.
The married couple who created a button to send a signal to your partner when you're in the mood for sex has faced a setback in their attempt to take their product to a bigger stage.
LoveSync gained the internet's attention — much of it satirical — after launching a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter in 2019. After raising more than $20,000 for their product, founders Ryan and Jenn Cmich appeared earlier this month on the reality-TV show "Shark Tank," where they were given the opportunity to present LoveSync to a panel of famed investors including Barbara Corcoran and Mark Cuban.
But the pitch for LoveSync didn't go as the Cmiches hoped. The married couple and cofounders asked for $100,000 from investors for a 10% stake in LoveSync. Their presentation — complete with two people acting out a scenario on stage in which LoveSync would be used — was met with skepticism from the investors.
"I'm having a hard time with the basic premise," investor Kevin O'Leary told the couple. "What about you two guys. Why dont you just talk to each other? 'Look, I want some sex — you in or you out?'"
The investors (called "sharks" on the show) echoed the negative reactions that many have had since first hearing about LoveSync. People online have ridiculed the device for its intent to replace sexual consent and communication, referring to it as a "central horniness server." Others drew similarities between LoveSync and the "nut button" meme that emerged online in 2016.
For their part, the Cmiches have defended their product in the face of mockery. The Cleveland couple, who have been married for more than 15 years, told Business Insider in early 2019 that skeptics were guilty of "black or white" thinking painting LoveSync in a poor light.
As explained in LoveSync's marketing material, the product is designed to eliminate the risk of getting rejected when you try to initiate sex. If you're in the mood to have sex with your partner, you press the bedside LoveSync button. If both partners tap their buttons within the same 15-minute "consensus window," both buttons will glow green to indicate both parties are in the mood. A pair of LoveSync buttons costs $57.
The Cmiches told Business Insider that LoveSync helps overcome the barrier between wanting to have sex and actually having sex, and that it's intended as a "tool" to improve communication between couples.
"We're not trying to stop people from talking. We're not trying to end the world," Ryan Cmich told Business Insider in 2019. "We're just trying to introduce a fun little dynamic to relationships."
All five investors on "Shark Tank" declined to put any money at all into LoveSync. The investors also criticized the couple for having a lack of a business plan for where LoveSync was heading beyond its successful Kickstarter. After the episode aired, "Shark Tank" investor Daymond John called out the couple on Twitter for failing to communicate their idea and failing to listen to criticism from the panel.
"Here's the real problem with your business plan: It's Ryan," Barbara Corcoran told the couple. "You're so in love with your idea that you're tripping over yourself to express your love again and again, and you really haven't adequately answered any objection that has been raised here."
In the moments backstage after they were dismissed, the Cmiches said they failed to adequately express their ideas for LoveSync.
"We are so excited about this product and this technology and all the ideas that we have for it that I think we let that get the best of us," Jenn Cmich said on the show. "We weren't effective enough in communicating the plan that we actually have to do that."
Nevertheless, the couple has highly publicized their failed "Shark Tank" appearance across their website, social-media platforms, and in a request to Business Insider for coverage and another interview.
Read the original article on Business Insider