In 2018, Disha Shidham left the Shark Tank US stage in the 18th episode of Season 9 after a savvy presentation of her brainchild – the Savy e-commerce storefront.
While she walked in with an ambitious stride, Disha had to leave the set without securing a deal from the sharks.
Being a Gen-Z product herself, Disha wanted to create a company that would bridge the gap between high-end e-commerce platforms and young, trendy buyers with different budget brackets.
She was seeking a whopping $100,000 in exchange for 10% of her company.
Despite an ambitious take-off, Savy Sales could not hit the ground running when Disha was unable to procure any funding to get her business to the next platform.
The company closed off in 2018 due to a lack of clientele and sales.
What is Savy?
When Disha Shidham sauntered into the glorious stage of Shark Tank US, we all expected a big showdown.
Everything, from the name of the company to the logo and other marketing aspects, seemed to be in place.
The business idea was good as well. It certainly had a huge target market – the Gen-Z and the millennial.
Both consumer groups are highly invested in online shopping despite having budget restrictions.
With her company, Disha wanted to create a solution for consumers who wanted to get their favorite products off different e-commerce platforms but couldn’t afford them.
Savy allowed customers to get alerts whenever a specific product had discounted rates.
But it did more than that – with the Savy application, customers could input the price that they would be willing to pay for a particular product.
If the company agreed with the customer’s price, the application would send an e-mail alert.
Thus, the company had two applications – bridging the gap between the virtual customers and their preferred marketplaces and allowing different e-commerce sellers to get a more realistic appraisal of how customers evaluate their products.
Despite looking good on paper, Savy had yet to appeal to the customers in the real sense.
Disha, the founder of the company, admitted that she had not earned a single dollar in revenue after one year of business.
She insisted that collecting data initially was the stepping stone to success.
Disha based her company on the purchasing habits of Gen-Z consumers. The name Savy is fit to represent the demands of the younger market, especially from online forums.
Think about it yourself – do you like bargaining and negotiating for different products?
If you are a smart buyer, you would definitely engage in a conversation to ensure you get the best price for your desired item.
The modern market is virtually living off discounts and offers. With Savy, Disha wanted to make virtual negotiations and bargaining accessible to online shoppers.
Being as young as 20-year old herself, she believed that her company catered to growing demand.
Thus, by integrating the highly-choosy fashion sense of the younger market and their restrictive budgets, Savy provided a fool-proof solution for automated price tracking of different products as well as letting the company know what they want to pay for a specific item.
Your Style, Your Price – the motto of Savy is enough to tell us about the vision of its founder and what she believed the company would stand for.
With just an idea, Disha launched her vision into the world and expected nature to nurture it.
Unfortunately, when she appeared on Shark Tank US, she didn’t have a lot to show.
After securing only “verbal agreements” with some undisclosed platforms, Disha convinced neither the Sharks nor the customers about the legitimacy of her company.
While the idea seemed like a good one for the e-commerce marketplace, Savy forgot to check that they weren’t the only online players engaged in the concept of bidding and tracking discounted prices.
The company, it seems, had a lot of potential. But because it was too early for Disha and her millennial temperament, she had to stomp out off the stage and take care of her company alone.
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Savy’s Savvy Shark Tank Pitch – What Happened on the Show?
To sum it up, Disha Shidham, the founder and owner of Savy, presented a disaster class in front of the Sharky panel.
While she started good, it all went downhill soon thereafter, with the judges showing no mercy on the 20-year ambitious entrepreneur.
Savy was introduced to the world on the big stage for the first time in 2018 when Disha walked into the popular reality show Shark Tank US to get funds for launching her company to the next stage.
Her ask? $100,000 in exchange for 10% of the company.
While that may not be much, given the standards set by some of the other ambitious contestants, the Sharks believed that she had nothing to back up her number.
And to be honest, they were right.
The start of the pitch was rocky itself. Disha came in and started introducing her brand as well as its function.
Unfortunately, she forgot her speech and started stammering, to which the Sharks were quite supportive.
After regaining her composure, Disha began explaining her brand. Savy provided an online solution to picky fashionista customers who didn’t have a lot of purchasing power.
The application, she clarified, would allow customers to set the price that they are willing to pay for a specific item.
If the company agrees with the specified price, the customer would get an e-mail alert and the transaction can then go through.
Disha then smartly explained that the company would have a two-fold approach to the market.
On the one hand, it will allow customers to get access to their preferred products at the best available prices.
On the other hand, companies will get direct feedback from their consumers about the market-based valuation of their products.
After having explained the product, Disha fielded some follow-up questions from the Sharks. Lori summarized the whole pitch to confirm whether she got the information right.
Kevin then chimed in and asked about the number of users that have registered with Savy.
The question revealed some disturbing figures from an investor’s point of view. First off, Savy had about 1,000 e-commerce partners, which seemed like a decent start.
But only around 2,000 customers had registered on the application to enjoy their services.
Mark didn’t flinch upon the revelation, however, and proceeded with another important question – how the company is approaching different e-commerce platforms for partnership.
To this, Disha revealed that she was primarily focusing on marketing through social media platforms.
She coded an army of bots on Instagram and Messenger to approach different prospects through direct messages.
The new information sparked a wave of curiosity among the Sharks. They were now interested in knowing the background of the 20-year-old entrepreneur in front of them.
Interestingly, Disha had an intriguing story, which she shared with zeal.
She told the Sharks about her history with the MIT Launch Program, which propagated the idea of her business into a real venture.
She also shared the details of one of her previous startups, which failed and went out of business because of the alleged incompetence of the involved coders.
They, supposedly, were mere high-school students and had limited access to knowledge and resources. Her previous venture was named TacBoard.
Disha also revealed that she missed out on a scholarship to the University of Michigan as she dropped the idea to take TacBoard to greater heights.
After getting to know the intriguing background of the entrepreneur in front of him, Mark Cuban came forward with an illuminating question
– “do you have any interest in going back to school?” Disha’s reply was a firm no, as she only wanted to concentrate on her business as of then.
Upon hearing her response, Mark wasted no time in going out of the deal, thereby surprising Disha.
He reasoned that while Disha was academically bright and generally smart, she had a lot to learn.
Kevin gave his two bits on the matter by contributing that many successful entrepreneurs did not have solid educational backgrounds.
However, he held up Mark’s opinion and went out as he felt it was too early for Disha to jump into the entrepreneurial landscape.
Robert tuned into the conversation by telling the viewers about his experience with University.
He opined that for Disha to be successful without going to school, she needed to be reverently obsessed with her product.
In his mind, she wasn’t quite there yet, and so he went out of the deal.
Next came Lori’s turn. She reiterated her concerns about Savy’s lack of sales, which was zero.
Upon questioning Disha’s original ask of $100,000 for a business that had earned no money, she ultimately went out because she thought the business was at its infant stage.
Davon jumped in next, claiming that the market already had some competitors offering similar services to customers.
Here, Disha was visibly desperate and her answers started becoming frantic and upset. Her tone and demeanor had changed completely from the beginning.
Nevertheless, she couldn’t convince Davon and he went out of the deal as well.
And that was it for Disha and her ambitious goal of acquiring a seed fund of $100,000.
All the Sharks had rejected her proposal, and all of them had distinctive but solid reasons for doing so. In the end, Disha walked out of the stage dejectedly.
“I’m pretty angry. I don’t think they took the time to listen. I don’t need them” – is what Disha told the interviewers after the deal failed to go through.
“I’m mad at her,” – quoted one of the judges at the end, visibly frustrated that Disha couldn’t explain her business or protect her stance well.
Well, deal or no deal, one thing is clear – the episode had a lot of sass and anger in it.
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Did Savy Secure a Shark Tank Deal?
All the judges backed out from Disha’s original ask of $100,000 for 10% of her company. None of them offered a counter-deal either.
The Sharks shared the same opinion, more or less – that both Disha and her business had made it into the stage prematurely, and they had to do a lot to grow into the world before they can make it.
Savy Shark Tank Update – What Happened After the Show?
After the end of the infamous Shark Tank episode featuring Savy, Disha had a savvy response to the rejection – “I don’t need them.”
While that was a confident jib, history would suggest that she, indeed, needed them and more importantly, their money.
For a few months after appearing on Shark Tank US, Savy did pretty well. All the marketing that the company received from the show worked well in their favor.
Credit where it’s due, Disha took this opportunity to expand her business well.
It was smooth sailing at first, at least for a couple of months. After the airing of the episode, Savy went ahead and partnered with some major as well as minor e-commerce platforms and businesses.
The partners in question also showered heaps of praises for Savy, stating that the data that they derived from the application helped them evaluate their products as per customer demands better.
After experiencing success at the initial level, Disha wanted to grow above and beyond.
To achieve greater heights, she launched a paid version of the application called Savy Sales, which initially ran a beta test with some high-volume and high-profile clients.
The beta testing revealed some interesting figures – the addition of Savy boosted a customer’s interaction with the businesses as more products were being added to their carts now.
In addition, Savy’s partners witnessed a dramatic 20% rise in their revenue through sales of their products after using Savy’s methodology of letting the customers fix the price they are willing to pay.
To honor the show that made everything possible, they also ran a “Shark Tank Special” service, an advertising campaign that would allow clients to run Savy Sales for free for 30 days.
Because of Savy’s initial success, Disha even boasted about her accomplishments and how the brutal Shark Tank rejection had somehow acted as a boon for her and her company in an interesting blog post.
Apart from experiencing success in the business world, Disha wanted to make Savy a hit name on the internet as well.
She moved past working for just her company’s website – www.staysavy.com – and also expanded to Social Media Marketing.
Within a few months of operations, the company garnered a lot of attraction on major platforms like Instagram and Facebook as well.
When they hit their ground running, it wasn’t common to see Savy gaining hundreds of new followers every day.
It seemed like everything was going well for Disha and her brainchild during the early days of their Shark Tank rejection. Ultimately, the lack of ideas and funds caught up to them.
The most prominent problem that plagued her company was the lack of sales.
Disha did not have any tangible business or revenue model that could help her make money, despite having an idea that could amass an army of users.
This is something that the Sharks were cautious of – that the young entrepreneur, while bright, did not pitch her business the way they wanted her to.
She did not have all the answers, and yet she continued to believe in herself. Unfortunately, that does not always work out.
Sometimes, you need more answers than you need confidence.
Is Savy Still in Business?
Unfortunately, Savy went out of business in the same year as the company appeared on Shark Tank US.
Despite an energetic start, they did not have any tangible revenues or funding to last for more than a few months.
Disha worked hard to prove the Sharks wrong.
But ultimately, it would have been better if she took their criticism as constructive feedback and worked on her business model and revenue scaling.
Running operations for over a year and not earning a single dollar in revenue is what scared the Sharks.
But more than that, it was the gullible nature of Disha who claimed that her business would earn $1,000,000 in a matter of months because she had a few verbal agreements from undisclosed companies.
The Sharks were quick to sniff out an empty promise and backed out of the deal. Disha claimed that she didn’t need them and started running her business alone.
She didn’t learn anything from the billionaire entrepreneurs sitting in front of her.
The opportunity missed cost her Savy. The company shut down all operations in 2018 after not being able to generate enough revenue.
The social media pages of the company soon suffered a blackout shortly thereafter as well.
The website disappeared and Savy only became an echo of that infamous Shark Tank US episode.
(See Savy’s Last Twitter Post): https://twitter.com/staysavy_/status/794949917705928705)
|Product||Data-driven company for ascertaining product prices for different companies|
|Asked For||$100,000 for 10% Equity|
|Final Deal||No Deal|
|Episode||Season 9, Episode 18|
|Air Date||21 January 2018|
|Business Status||Out of Business|
|Net Worth||Not Available|
Meet the Savy Founder
Savy’s appearance on Shark Tank US awakened several debates on public forums. Some people believed that the Sharks were a little harsh on the young entrepreneur.
Others believed that she got what was coming, considering how “cocky” she acted.
Well, it’s not for us to fuel the fire and chime in with our opinions. But we will talk about something that most people can agree on – Disha Shidham, the founder of Savy, had an intriguing story.
Even the Sharks perked up when she started recounting her many infantile experiences in the entrepreneurial landscape.
So now that we are done with her company, it’s time to meet the obsessive inventor herself!
We don’t know a lot about Disha’s early life as a baby. But her real journey started when she turned into an ambitious teenager with a whole world in front of her that she wanted to learn from.
The entrepreneurial world sparked her interest when she was as little as 16.
A high-school student full of curiosity, Disha participated in a lot of activities relating to start-ups and how to launch different business ideas into existence.
The most prominent breakthrough came in her junior-high-school year in the summer of 2014, when she participated in the popular MIT program, LaunchX.
In this program, Disha competed for 4-6 weeks and learned a lot about entrepreneurship.
She credits her interest in building startups and launching innovations to the learnings she amassed from this opportunity. From then on, the sky was the limit for Disha.
She continued to participate in anything that would give her an edge in the entrepreneurial world.
It was after the inauguration of her first startup, TacBoard that Disha started deriving an obsessive pleasure from running her business.
That, coupled with the fact that she did well in all the entrepreneurial competitions and meeting Tim Draper, the eccentric investor, convinced her that taking her business to the next level is more important than higher education.
As a high-school student, Disha had to juggle her time between studies and running TacBoard.
Because of how hectic the responsibilities were, Disha often felt that she was producing sub-par results because of the toll that school was taking on her.
That was when she decided that she would be more interested in taking her business to the next level than in acquiring higher education.
Disha was a bright student and she had many doors to some wonderful opportunities open to her.
For instance, she had successfully bagged a scholarship and admission to the prestigious University of Michigan through its EECS program.
However, because of her investment and commitment to TacBoard, she decided to forgo the opportunity.
While the decision came off as a surprise to many, Disha had never been surer about taking on the more unconventional path. Unfortunately, things didn’t turn out as well as she had hoped.
TacBoard, the startup for which she had placed so much on line, started going down after some months of operation.
The weakling, Disha clarified, was the coding aspect of the business, which she had entrusted to a team of high-school students.
Ultimately, she couldn’t sustain TacBoard and the company went out of business. But that was no problem for a bright mind like Disha.
At 19 years of age, she launched another startup that functioned just like TacBoard but had more elaborate plans and models.
She also took the responsibility for the coding part herself, having learned the skill at a younger age. The startup was named Savy.
In 2018, she presented her business idea in front of world-renowned investors on the global stage of Shark Tank US.
While she didn’t get any deal out of the show, Disha didn’t give up and used the rejection to get some positive publicity.
Unfortunately, Savy went out of business shortly afterward as well.
For an individual who spent years getting out of the tag of a “young entrepreneur”, Disha committed many blunders that you would expect a young and inexperienced entrepreneur to commit.
In 2022, however, she is still a young and bright individual and has many doors open to a successful entrepreneurial career line.
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What People Are Saying About Savy
The number one problem that Savy had was that their idea never reached a lot of customers.
Despite having a promising target market, Disha was unable to expand her business to reach all Gen-Z online shoppers.
Despite this, Savy got many reviews, especially after their disaster-class appearance on Shark Tank US.
The most productive reviews came from the representatives of the company partnered with Savy after the initial months of rejection from the Sharks.
“It’s a great way to evaluate the correct or incorrect pricing of our products” – quoted one of the company officials after having experienced some successful results from their partnership with Savy.
Similarly, other companies expressed their gratitude and appreciation for Savy’s effective business model.
They claimed that their revenue soared by 30% as the customers now had the leeway to negotiate and demand their preferred products despite having budget restrictions.
The reviews for Savy by the companies partnered with the startup, therefore, were largely positive.
A lot of them focused on statistics to shower praises for how efficient the relationship was with the 20-year-old entrepreneur’s brainchild.
Direct reviews from the customers were a little bit harder to get by. However, there were many people in support of the startup.
“Your idea is amazing. Don’t waste your time and money on University.
The Sharks missed out on a great idea,” – said one Twitter user, showing support to the young-minded entrepreneur after the disastrous Shark Tank appearance.
Others expressed a similar distaste for the Sharks, who supposedly did not listen to Disha’s idea well enough – “Congrats Dish!
Thought I wish the Sharks would have heard more about her business versus just her awesome story. I know she’ll keep up the strong progress and succeed anyway!”
Despite many positive reviews and messages of support, some didn’t like Disha’s comments as she exited the Shark Tank stage.
“She has a lot to learn, not just in business, but in life,” – One of the YouTube comments expressed their dislike for Disha’s final “I don’t need them,” comment.
Another YouTuber had a more constructive viewpoint on Disha’s business proposal – “If she walked into my company and asked me to partner with her, I would say the idea is great, but I would rather just do it on my own website,”
And that is exactly one of the main reasons why Savy never took off.
While the idea was great, it might have been better if she just patented its use for business and sold it to interested ventures.
Businesses will reap greater benefits if they just incorporate this strategy on their own websites instead of partnering with a third party for the same.
What was Savy’s Revenue Model?
Savy’s business model was quite unclear during the pitch. The company had zero revenue after one year of operation.
Their main source of revenue was supposedly the paid partnerships with various retailers who would use their services.
When Did Savy Go Out of Business?
Savy disappeared from the entrepreneurial landscape in 2018 itself, after just a couple of months of operations following the Shark Tank disaster class.
What was Savy’s Unique Selling Proposition?
Savy’s idea to capture the young market with budget restrictions was great.
They allowed marketplaces to evaluate their pricing models while enabling online shoppers to negotiate prices on their favorite products and get e-mail alerts whenever the company agreed to offer discounts.
Savy was one of the only players in the intelligent, data-driven business-to-commerce platform.
While there are no exact competitors in the niche, there are some tough players that Savy failed to consider before they launched:
We all know what eBay does. Albeit it sells second-hand products and it’s primarily a C2C model, the platform works on the same principles as Savy did.
The bidding model is still active on eBay, and millions of customers enjoy the feature every day.
They simply specify the highest they are willing to spend on an item and then wait for an alert whenever the seller agrees.
This one is more for collectors and people with refined pallets.
Sotheby’s is different from traditional platforms like eBay and Savy in the way that they play only for a niche market of the super-elites.
It houses the bidding model for luxurious items and collectibles.
Copart deployed similar bidding and auctioning model for auto parts and vehicles.
The business soared as people were now able to set a fixed price for the auto-related commodities they wanted.
It practically functioned on the same technological wavelength as Savy, but with a better revenue model.