CertifiKID Hooks Deal with Shark Kevin O’Leary
Family-Focused Deal Website Cut Deal with “Mr. Wonderful” for $600,000 Investment on ABC’s April 7th Shark Tank EpisodeApr 08, 2019
POTOMAC, MD - April 8, 2019 – CertifiKID, a Potomac, Maryland-based deal website focused on kids’ activities and family entertainment, appeared on the popular ABC television show Shark Tank on April 7th and cut a deal with Kevin O’Leary (a/k/a “Mr. Wonderful”).
After receiving three offers from Mr. O’Leary, Daymond John, and Barbara Corcoran, founders Jamie and Brian Ratner accepted a $600,000 investment from Mr. O’Leary for a 19% stake in CertifiKID. His investment in CertifiKID is one of the top five biggest investments Mr. O’Leary has made in any company in ten seasons of Shark Tank. This is also the first external investment for CertifiKID.
“We are ecstatic that Kevin O’Leary and his outstanding team have joined the CertifiKID family,” said CEO Jamie Ratner. “We believe our partnership is going to open new doors and create so many opportunities for CertifiKID to be the go-to resource for parents all over the country looking for affordable activities and entertainment for their kids no matter where they live. We are already seeing this potential realized in a myriad of ways across all segments of our business. The sky is the limit and we are feeling ‘wonderful!’”
“I am extremely excited about my investment in CertifiKID. It’s a game changing resource for families,” said Kevin O’Leary. “What parent doesn’t want access to a huge menu of family experiences that won’t break the bank? Jamie and Brian have the passion, vision and most importantly, strategy to expand the CertifiKID footprint deeper and wider all across the U.S. My team and I look forward to helping them accomplish this goal and making CertifiKID a true household name nationwide. We’re off to a great start. CertifiKID will join me on ABC’s The View on April 11th as my featured Shark Tank entrepreneurs.”
“While we were open to an investment from any of the Sharks and saw the benefits that each of them could provide, Kevin O’Leary was clearly one that we were targeting,” said President Brian Ratner. “Kevin’s listeners and audience are CertifiKID’s. His mindset about teaching parents and kids how to save money, support for female-led businesses, and investments in our core market – the mom and family space – are in perfect alignment with our business vision and strategy. We believe he saw this synergy right away, as well as our passion for the CertifiKID community we have built and how and why we have been successful.”
The brainchild of D.C.-area mom entrepreneur and self-professed expert “Deal Finder,” Jamie Ratner, CertifiKID was the first of its kind in the niche family deal space when it launched in 2010. Nine years later, CertifiKID is a $5M+ per year business and a household name in its Washington, D.C. and Baltimore area home base. The company has also expanded to other major markets across the country, including Chicago, Los Angeles, and Atlanta.
The Ratners went up against Mark Cuban, Kevin O’Leary, Lori Greiner, Barbara Corcoran, and Daymond John on Shark Tank’s April 7th show. The couple’s children, Jamie’s parents (her father Gary is CFO), and CertifiKID COO, Amie Morville and her daughter, also made guest appearances on the show.
“The safe and comfortable approach for us would have been to keep doing what we have been doing,” said Brian Ratner. “We don’t need a Shark’s investment to continue to grow and be successful as we’ve built a phenomenal and profitable business. However, we recognize that the business is at a point now where a strategic partnership with the right Shark could be the gasoline to our flame and help us reach our potential much more quickly. Having gone through this experience, we are more confident than ever that Kevin O’Leary is that Shark.”
CertifiKID offers its members exclusive deals at incredible savings on everything families want and need – from family-friendly activities, entertainment, and getaways to kids’ summer camps, classes and birthday party packages. Unlike its competitors, CertifiKID does not aim to be everything to everyone, which is what Jamie Ratner credits as the key to the company’s success. “While the few deal sites that remain in the space continually expand their offerings, we remain focused on the family market. Parents come to our site because they know they are not going to have to wade through an overwhelming number of deals that don’t apply to them to find what they’re looking for.”
To celebrate the Shark Tank event, CertifiKID held a watch party for family, friends, and CertifiKID members and business partners. For video and images from the event, please contact Kim Humphrey, Director of Marketing, [email protected].
Recognized by CNBC, The Washington Post, and Washingtonian Magazine as one of the best deal websites for parents, CertifiKID offers exclusive deals every day on kids’ camps and classes, products, family activities, restaurants, entertainment, birthday party activities, special needs offers, and much MORE! CertifiKID Founder & CEO Jamie Ratner was named one of the region’s “Brightest Young Business Leaders” by The Washington Business Journal and one of Greater Washington’s top women business leaders by Washington SmartCEO.
For press inquiries or to arrange an interview with Jamie and Brian Ratner, please email [email protected].