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Business News/ News / Trends/  Shark Tank India: What happens once a deal is struck on screen? Anupam Mittal says…
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Shark Tank India: What happens once a deal is struck on screen? Anupam Mittal says…

Mint caught up with Shaadi.com founder and popular Shark Anupam Mittal as the show returned to the silver screen (and smartphones) for a third season in January.

Anupam Mittal, shark tank judge and founder of Shaadi.comPremium
Anupam Mittal, shark tank judge and founder of Shaadi.com

Shark Tank India is no stranger to controversy — from funding allegations to assertions that the contest is ‘scripted’. Previous seasons have seen the judges commit to more than 120 crore to contestants and their fledgling companies. Some, however, insist that they are yet to receive funds – despite cracking a deal on screen during the first two seasons. Shaadi.com founder Anupam Mittal, however, reveals that there's more to the story. 

Mint caught up with the multi-season Shark as the show returned to the silver screen (and smartphones) for a third season in January. The latest season features an extended 12-judge panel with Mittal, Aman Gupta, Amit Jain, Namita Thapar, Peyush Bansal and Vineeta Singh reprising their roles. The show has also put some new deal structures on the table — including royalty on sales.

The ongoing season has seen several made-in-India brands strike a chord with the expanded 12-judge panel. 

What happens after an entrepreneur ‘strikes’ a deal on air?

According to July 2023 data from PrivateCircle Research, around 40% of the deals from Season 1 had been closed one year after the show aired. The seven judges had reportedly seen 28 deals to culmination — with only 17 crore out of the initially promised 40 crore being invested till mid-July. The numbers however do not include debt. It is also pertinent to note that the data had been disputed by some of the judges.

ALSO READ: Ashneer Grover takes fresh jibe at Shark Tank India judges: ‘Put money in escrow account…'

Mittal explains that the execution process can take anywhere between a month to more than a year depending on “how ready the company is" for funding. The Shaadi.com founder is believed to have invested around 12 crores during the first two seasons of Shark Tank. 

“Our teams get in touch with the founders and then typically we create a WhatsApp group. We start the diligence process and paperwork parallelly and connect with them to flag issues – if they've not met the conditions or if the claims are wrong. And then we wait for them to complete the process. Some of them do, some of them never come back to us," he adds.

Jaipur-based Zillionaire had walked away with an investment of 1 crore from Mittal — double their original ask of 50 lakh — during Season 2. The payout however came some six or seven months later due to technical snags. 

“Those guys didn't even have a company formed. And the ROC website was down for three months. My team was helping them and trying to find other ways…going directly to the registrar company…but for three months it was impossible to register a new company," the Shark recalls. 

ALSO READ: Shark Tank India: Here's what Ritesh Agarwal says about his journey so far

“90% of the time…if a deal does not happen after the initial commitment…it's because the founder backed out because they think they got a better valuation outside. Let's say we commit to 20 deals and 10 go through. Out of the 10 that did not go through at least seven or eight will be cases where the founder has backed out. And you'll have two three instances where the claims were not correct or the requisite conditions were not met," Mittal explains.

Shark Tank Season 3, Mittal assures Mint, would showcase “real authenticity" with “solid founders and great investments". 

“As always, you know how much ever there is funding winter out there, it's always summer on the tank, you will see a lot of good, wholesome investments," he signs off.

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Published: 05 Feb 2024, 01:10 PM IST
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