Mark Cuban did it again.
After financing Babson startup Detrapel (together with Lori Greiner), the owner of the Dallas Mavericks opened his wallet – with fellow ‘shark’ Sara Blakely – to fund $250,000 in another local startup: Alice’s Table, which went through TechStars Boston as a member of the 2017 class and has a presence in over 30 U.S. states. Cuban and Blakely took home a 10 percent equity stake, including the ability to buy another 10 percent at the next round.
The deal was aired on Sunday night after Alice Rossiter Lewis, CEO and founder of Alice’s Table and a resident of Brookline, MA, pitched her idea for a flower arrangement events platform in front of the panel of ABC’s ‘Shark Tank’ as the first contestant of the night. The episode – number 911 of the series – was filmed during the summer in Culver City, CA, where Rossiter Lewis stayed for a few days.
“For me, it really felt like another meeting with investors.”
In an interview with BostInno, Rossiter Lewis said that her experience at the three-month accelerator Techstars prepared her well for the moment to pitch her idea in the ‘tank.’ “For me, it really felt like another meeting with investors,” she said. “The difference is you’re under hot lights and have cameras around, right? So that, obviously, increases the nerve.”
Launched in September 2015, Alice’s Table is an online platform that brings women together by learning new skills around flower arrangement. Similar to popular “paint and sip” classes, Alice’s Table customers pay $65 to attend a class and learn the art of floral arrangement. The startup also helps women become entrepreneurs by providing opportunities to be an “Exec,” a local host of such events. According to Rossiter Lewis, 118 execs are currently part of the platform.
“The fact that Mark and Sara really understood the business not just as a flower arranging company but as a technology platform that has huge scaling potential… is just validation for what we’re doing,” Rossiter Lewis said.
Based in Back Bay, the company has six employees.
Image: Alice Rossiter Lewis, CEO and founder of Alice’s Table, with Mark Cuban and Sara Blakely on the stage of the 911th episode of ‘Shark Tank.’ Image courtesy of ABC.