Actor turned entrepreneur Nick Baker took his DadWare Bondaroo to the Sharks on ABC’s Shark Tank to see if he could get an investment in his apparel company.
Baker pitched his company to sharks Mark Cuban, Daymond John, Kevin O’Leary, Lori Greiner and Robert Herjavec. According to the episode synopsis, he “showcases his clothing design which helps to comfortably bring dads and their babies closer together.”
The episode of Shark Tank airs tonight, May 8, 2020, at 8 p.m./7 p.m. central on ABC.
Here’s what you should know about Dadware and The Bondaroo:
1. Baker Originally Moved to Los Angeles to Be an Actor and Comedian
Nick Baker, the founder of DadWare, originally moved to Los Angeles to further his career as an actor and comedian.
He’d gone to college and studied theater and being an actor and comedian was his goal in life, but making DadWare successful has now eclipsed that as his goal.
He was working as a waiter when he became a father, and he told Heavy that he was approaching 40 at the time and didn’t want to be a waiter for the rest of his life. That’s when he decided to start DadWare. His experience with acting was helpful when transitioning to starting his own business, though.
“When you’re an actor, you have to be an entrepreneur,” he said.
2. The Bondaroo Promotes Skin-to-Skin Bonding
Eva, Baker’s daughter, was born in May 2015, and the delivery process was traumatic for his wife Dawn. According to the DadWare website, Baker took off his shirt after the birth of his daughter to start asking to skin bonding.
“The nurses and doctors stopped to stare and their jaws hit the floor,” the website reads. “They told us they had never seen a dad do this before.”
He said that he continued the bonding process at home, but that meant lying around with no shirt on, and he eventually got tired of not wearing a shirt and ended up coming up with the idea of a shirt that opens and closes using a velcro fastener.
3. Starting a Company Was More Work Than Baker Expected
Baker told us that the thing he was most surprised about since the beginning of his company was the fact that it was a lot more work than he expected, though he is very committed to the company.
“I’ve worked really hard at this, and I’ve been really committed,” he said.
The first person he took the Bondaroo to in the fashion industry told him that it was a terrible idea and wouldn’t work, but he still decided to give it a try.
“When I started, I thought I was just going to throw it up on the internet and it was just going to blow up,” he said. “And then when that reality crashed, I realized it was going to take work and time.”
4. They Secured Their Patent Following the ‘Shark Tank’ Taping
Since the taping of the episode of Shark Tank in September, they have secured their patent by the U.S. Patent Office.
Also since the taping, they have done over $130,000 in additional sales, and they are expecting more with Father’s Day coming up in June.
“We really hope to raise awareness on the importance of skin to skin bonding especially for first-time fathers,” Baker said.
5. The Bondaroo Is Available Online for $39.99
At the time of writing, the Bondaroo is available online in sizes small through XXL in either Navy or Charcoal colors for $39.99.
The shirts are made in Los Angeles with French Terry Fabric and Seamless Velcro Loop Material.
According to the website, dads benefit from skin to skin bonding with their baby by becoming empowered to care for your new baby, begin the bonding process with your baby from the start and becoming intuitive to your baby’s sign of hunger or worry.
Shark Tank airs on ABC at 8 p.m./7 p.m. central. Tune in to see if Baker is able to get a deal with one of the Sharks.